Jan. 18, 2011
Duane Akina, a defensive coaching veteran at Texas and Arizona for the past 24 years, was hired today as secondary coach at the University of Arizona by head coach Mike Stoops.
Akina, 54, has coached three Thorpe Award winners including Darryll Lewis at Arizona, and 23 defensive backs who moved on to the NFL. He has been at Texas for the past 10 years and was a top defensive assistant at Arizona from 1987 to 2000.
"Duane has a ton of experience at the top level of the game, is familiar with the Arizona program and is a great complement to our defensive staff," said Stoops. "He's been a coordinator at two schools and knows defense inside and out. His championship experience will be a huge benefit to our program."
"I'm very excited about coming back to Arizona. It's obviously a special place for me and my family, where lots of good things happened," Akina said. "I'm grateful to Texas for giving me a chance to be a part of Longhorn football for the past 10 years and now I'm appreciative of the chance to work with Coach Stoops. (Athletics director) Greg Byrne has a vision for Arizona football that's going to work. I want to help," he said.
A 33-year coaching veteran who has spent the bulk of those seasons working with defensive backs, Akina tutored Lewis (1990) and UT's Michael Huff (2005) and Aaron Ross (2006) to Thorpe Awards, plus has worked with six finalists for the honor including UA's Chris McAlister. He also worked with UA consensus All-American Chuck Cecil in his first season at Arizona in 1987.
Akina has eight years' experience as a coordinator. He was offensive coordinator for Dick Tomey at UA from 1992-95, and Texas' co-defensive coordinator for four seasons under Mack Brown at Texas from 2004-07. He has been assistant head coach and defensive backs coach the last three years at Texas. He joined the UT staff for the 2001 season as DBs coach after briefly being named defensive coordinator under John Mackovic at Arizona that winter.