Mizzou football assistant Charlie Harbison stepping away from full-time coaching role

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  • Charlie Harbison
    American football player and coach
Missouri defensive backs coach Charlie Harbison watches a play during a practice at the Devine Indoor Facility.
Missouri defensive backs coach Charlie Harbison watches a play during a practice at the Devine Indoor Facility.

Charlie Harbison was Eli Drinkwitz's first hire for his Missouri football staff over two years ago and has been an integral mentor to the Tigers head coach.

Due to off-field health issues within his family, Harbison is stepping away from a full-time coaching role with the Tigers, the program announced Wednesday.

"Charlie Harbison is stepping away from his position as safeties coach to allow him more flexibility in handling personal family matters in North Carolina,” Drinkwitz said in a news release. “Coach Cheese will remain a valued member of our program moving forward and we appreciate his commitment to Mizzou football.”

Harbison served as an associate head coach while overseeing the defensive backs. Missouri defensive coordinator Steve Wilks and fellow assistant coach Anthony Fletcher also have responsibilities coaching the secondary.

Harbison, a Shelby, North Carolina, native, will move into a different role within the program that has yet to be determined.

The Tigers are now down two full-time assistant coaches after tight ends coach Casey Woods departed the program in December to become the offensive coordinator at Southern Methodist.

Harbison is a veteran defensive coach with 30 years of collegiate experience, including 14 seasons in the Southeastern Conference with five different schools.

Harbison spent the 2019 season with Drinkwitz at Appalachian State, also coaching defensive backs, where the Mountaineers won the Sun Belt Conference championship with a 12-1 record and earned a No. 20 ranking in the final regular-season polls.

He spent the 2018 season as defensive backs coach for the Arizona Cardinals, with Wilks serving as the head coach.

The 63-year-old Harbison was twice named one of the nation's top 25 recruiters by Rivals, in 2005 and 2010.

Contact Eric Blum at eblum@columbiatribune.com. Follow @ByEricBlum on Twitter.

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This article originally appeared on Columbia Daily Tribune: Mizzou football assistant Charlie Harbison steps away

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