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Arizona State hires Chris Claiborne as new linebackers coach

Arizona State Sun Devils Head Coach Herm Edwards on the sidelines during a college football game against the UCLA Bruins played on October 26, 2019 at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, CA. (Photo by John Cordes/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Arizona State football announced Monday it has hired Chris Claiborne as its linebackers coach.

Claiborne joins Herm Edwards’ staff after spending last season as an offensive quality control analyst for Southern California, his alma mater.

That was Claiborne’s first year on the college coaching scene after spending the previous five years coaching high school football in California.

“I’m just excited for this opportunity. I have played the position for a long time and I look forward to contributing to the growth of these young men and helping them reach their potential,” Claiborne said in a press release. “Just to be in the atmosphere with this coaching staff is a blessing. With coaches like Herm Edwards, Marvin Lewis, Antonio Pierce and Shawn Slocum in the room, it is an incredible environment for a young and new coach.

“It will be a great opportunity and it is important for me to always be growing and be learning constantly.”

Claiborne takes the role Antonio Pierce held. Pierce is now the Sun Devils’ sole defensive coordinator.

Claiborne was inducted in USC’s Athletic Hall of Fame in 2018. He was a three-year starter for the Trojans from 1996-98 at linebacker. In his junior season, Claiborne was Pac-10 Defensive Player of the Year, a unanimous All-American and won the Butkus Award as the nation’s best linebacker.

He went on to have an eight-year career in the NFL after being selected ninth overall in the 1999 NFL Draft.

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