Behind the Steel Curtain is reporting, citing the Twitter feed of Asher Wildman, that Pittsburgh Steelers offensive line coach Sean Kugler will leave the Pittsburgh Steelers to accept the head coaching job of the University of Texas El Paso Miners (full disclosure, I also write occasionally for BTSC.)
Kugler played for the UTEP minors and began his coaching career at Boise State.
Asher Wildman is the sports anchor of KVIA 7 a local station in El Paso and broke the news late in the evening of December 7th. As of 11:00 am Eastern time December 8th, neither the Post-Gazette nor ESPN are confirming the news.
Steelers Pay Price of Success?
The Steelers hired Sean Kugler after the Buffalo Bills fired him following the 2009 season. While the Bills had indeed given up a tremendous number of sacks that season, Kugler had managed an offensive line that was ravaged by injuries.
The experience served him well in Pittsburgh, because in Pittsburgh Kugler had regularly had to shuffle offensive lineman in and out of position due to a constant cycle of injuries. Kugler has managed the situations well, and has played a role in the development of high draft picks Maurkice Pouncey, Marcus Gilbert, and Mike Adams.
Moreover, it is under Kulger that the Steelers offensive line, once a road grading unit the NFL defenses feared, has regained at least some its ability to dominate at the line of scrimmage.
Assuming the news is in fact confirmed, that will signal that Kugler’s success with the Steelers has not gone unnoticed. Losing Kugler would be a blow to Pittsburgh, but Mike Tomlin has repeatedly said he will not stand in the way of any assistant coach who wants to climb the career ladder.