ARIZONA STATE FOOTBALL

Report: Antonio Pierce joining Raiders as LBs coach after resigning from ASU

Feb 14, 2022, 5:37 PM | Updated: 5:38 pm
Arizona State Sun Devils defensive coordinator Antonio Pierce during the SRS Distribution Las Vegas...
Arizona State Sun Devils defensive coordinator Antonio Pierce during the SRS Distribution Las Vegas Bowl between the Wisconsin Badgers and the Arizona State Sun Devils on December 30, 2021 at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas, NV. (Photo by Jordon Kelly/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
(Photo by Jordon Kelly/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Former Arizona State defensive coordinator, associate head coach and recruiting coordinator Antonio Pierce has reached an agreement with the Las Vegas Raiders to become their new linebackers coach, according to NFL Network’s Mike Garofolo.

Pierce resigned in early February from his positions after his name had been amongst those in reports about the ongoing NCAA investigation into ASU’s alleged recruiting violations.

The Sun Devils on Friday announced they’d be elevating analyst and interim defensive backs coach Donnie Henderson to defensive coordinator as Pierce’s replacement.

Pierce’s departure was the fifth related to an NCAA investigation that involves alleged ASU staffers committing recruiting violations during the COVID-19 dead period in 2020.

While that investigation continues, ASU in January removed former ASU wide receivers coach Prentice Gill and secondary coach Chris Hawkins, while tight ends coach Adam Breneman resigned.

That trio was on administrative leave the entire season amid the investigation, but the Sun Devils then took a bigger hit a few days before Pierce’s exit when offensive coordinator Zak Hill resigned due to his apparent involvement in recruiting malpractices.

Pierce was promoted to recruiting coordinator as well as co-defensive coordinator in 2020 after serving as the team’s linebackers coach since 2017. In 2021, he was named associate head coach and sole defensive coordinator.

Pierce’s resignation came on National Signing Day. The Sun Devils had only nine commits who are not transfers and have the 104th-rated class in the nation, according to 247 Sports. It’s the worst class in the Pac-12 this year and historically the worst for ASU since 247 Sports’ database began in 1999.

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