BATON ROUGE -- Earl Lane, who spent 10 years on the staff at the University of South Florida, has been named the defensive line coach at LSU, head coach Les Miles announced on Friday.
Lane takes over for Karl Dunbar who departed last month after taking the defensive line job with the Minnesota Vikings. Lane comes to LSU after a brief stint as the defensive line coach at Wisconsin, a position that he resigned from early this week after accepting the LSU job.
"We're excited to have Earl join our staff," Miles said. "He comes to LSU highly recommended. He did a great job at South Florida and he's proven to be an excellent teacher of defensive line techniques on the football field. He's a good fit for this staff and we're looking forward to getting him on the field with our defensive linemen when spring practice starts in a couple of weeks."
At South Florida, Lane helped build that program from scratch as he was part of the original coach staff for the Bulls. Hired at South Florida in 1996, Lane spent all 10 years coaching for Bulls head coach Jim Leavitt. During his stay at South Florida, the Bulls went from the I-AA ranks to playing in the school's first bowl game this year.
"This is a great opportunity and I feel really blessed to have been given this chance," Lane said. "I'm appreciative of the opportunity and look forward to coaching at LSU.
"I owe a great deal to Coach Leavitt and the coaches I worked with at South Florida. I learned a great deal about football during my stay at South Florida, which made this opportunity at LSU possible."
At South Florida, Lane coached a defensive line that helped the Bulls rank among the top five in the nation in sacks in 2001 and 2002. In 2002, South Florida's defensive line accounted for 33 of the team's 45 sacks, while a year earlier they had 31.5 of the squad's 41 sacks.
Last year, the Bulls ranked No. 14 in the nation in scoring defense and they were No. 18 in rushing defense on their way to reaching a bowl game for the first time in school history. The Bulls lost to North Carolina State, 14-0, in the Meineke Car Care Bowl to cap the 2005 season.
Lane is also known as a tremendous recruiter, something that should prove to be beneficial for the Tigers, especially in the state of Florida.
"Having spent the last 10 years coaching at South Florida, Earl has recruited Florida and he's very familiar with the high school coaches and the programs in that state," Miles said.
Prior to his coaching stint at South Florida, Lane coached linebackers for one year (1993) at Bloomingdale High School, followed by two years (1994-95) as the defensive coordinator at Brandon High School in Florida.
Other coaching stops for Lane include: defensive coordinator at Tampa Catholic High School in 1980-81; defensive line coach at Tampa Chamberlain High School in 1982-83; defensive line coach at Tampa Gaither High School in 194-85; and defensive coordinator at Tampa Bay Vo-Tech in 1991-92.
Lane, 49, is a graduate of Northwood University and Plant High School in Tampa. He and his wife Sharon have two sons, James and Sharrick, who just recently signed a football scholarship with Louisiana-Lafayette.
The Earl Lane File
Birthdate: April, 23, 1956
Hometown: Tampa, Fla.
Children: James (22), Sharrick (16)
High School: Plant High School
College: Northwood University
1980-81 Tampa Catholic High School (defensive coordinator)
1982-83 Tampa Chamberlain High School (defensive line)
1984-85 Tampa Gaither High School (defensive line)
1991-92 Tampa Bay Vo-Tech (defensive coordinator)
1993 Bloomingdale High School (linebackers)
1994 Brandon High School (defensive coordinator)
1996-2005 South Florida (defensive line)
2006 LSU (defensive line)