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The pipeline from the University of Washington to Georgia Southern made another delivery on Friday.
Former Huskies defensive line coach Elwyn "Rip" Rowan will have the same coaching duties under new head coach Clay Helton. Rowan, 30, was on the Washington staff this past season with then-defensive backs coach Will Harris and then-defensive analyst Aaron Schwanz. Harris is the Eagles' new defensive coordinator and secondary coach, while Schwanz will coach linebackers in Statesboro.
Helton, as a former Pac-12 Conference assistant and head coach at Southern Cal, has competed for years against the Washington program. He had said that the new defensive coordinator will have input in the hiring of the defensive assistants, and Harris came on board officially on Tuesday, and Schwanz on Wednesday.
All three became available when Washington hired Kalen DeBoer as the new head coach on Nov. 29 and the former Fresno State coach picked his staff.
Helton called Rowan, a Marietta native, "one of the bright young stars in college football today."
"Having worked alongside new (GS) defensive coordinator Will Harris at Washington, his defensive line units are extremely physical and disruptive," Helton said in a press release. "The staff chemistry between Will, Rip, and new linebackers coach Aaron Schwanz was evident during the interview process. They do an amazing job of tying the defense's back end to the defensive front.
"Being a Georgia native with tremendous Southeast ties, he becomes another great addition to our recruiting team. We look forward to a lot of tackles for loss in our future from coach Rowan and his defensive line unit!"
Rowan said he was excited to join Helton's staff.
"I can't wait to get back to my roots in the great state of Georgia!" Rowan said in the press release. "I know the tremendous pride and traditions of this program run deep, and I am honored to be able to get this program back to the championship level that Eagle Nation is accustomed to."
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Rowan spent the 2021 season as the defensive line coach at the University of Washington, working with one of the stingiest defenses in the country. The Huskies allowed just 22.7 points per game and averaged over five tackles per loss per game.
The pressure his line generated helped lead to the success of the secondary, which led the FBS in the fewest passing yards allowed per game and was third in pass efficiency defense.
— Georgia Southern Football (@GSAthletics_FB) December 24, 2021
He went to the UW as a defensive analyst in March 2019 and was promoted to defensive line coach in February 2021 after two seasons as an analyst.
Rowan was listed on 247Sports' "30 Under 30" listing of "rising stars" in college football in 2019.
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Rowan went to Washington after serving as a graduate assistant coach at Florida Atlantic in 2017 and 2018.
After working as a history teacher and assistant football coach at Northwest High School in Clarksville, Tennessee, he began his college coaching career as a graduate assistant coach at Southern Miss in 2015 and 2016, where his attention was focused on the defensive line.
A four-year letterman defensive lineman and linebacker at Austin Peay, Rowan made the Dean's List numerous times and received his bachelor's degree in history and education in 2014. He earned a master's degree from Southern Miss in 2016.
Nathan Dominitz is the Sports Content Editor of the Savannah Morning News and savannahnow.com. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Twitter: @NathanDominitz
This article originally appeared on Savannah Morning News: Georgia Southern football team hires defensive line coach Rip Rowan