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Georgia Football: Willie Martinez Candidate for Position at Auburn

ATHENS, GA - OCTOBER 11:  Defensive coordinator Willie Martinez (C) of the Georgia Bulldogs and the bench errupt in celebration after a defensive stop against the Tennessee Volunteers during the game at Sanford Stadium on October 11, 2008 in Athens, Georgia.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images
Blake SilversAnalyst IIIFebruary 13, 2012

Former Georgia defensive coordinator Willie Martinez is apparently a leading candidate for an assistant position at Auburn under Brian VanGorder. 

Martinez, who worked under VanGorder at Georgia as a defensive backs coach, would be next in a series of assistants hired by Gene Chizik who are already familiar with coaching in the Southeastern Conference. 

When VanGorder left the Bulldogs in 2005 for the Jacksonville Jaguars, Martinez was promoted to his former position of defensive coordinator under Coach Mark Richt.  

Now that VanGorder has left the Falcons for the same position at Auburn, he is apparently looking to lure some familiar faces to his new staff.  

Brian VanGorder's tenure between the hedges seems to be the most recent high-water mark for UGA fans, and his predecessor Martinez was never able to gain the trust of the fanbase, eventually being replaced by current defensive coordinator Todd Grantham.  

VanGorder's departure from the Atlanta Falcons was a little unexpected, especially to move into a college position, other than head coach, however his hiring of Martinez comes as no real surprise.

Though UGA fans have tried hard to put his time at Georgia well behind them, his experience as a defensive coordinator in the SEC, regardless of the outcome, makes him a great hire for Auburn as a position coach.  

Notes:

Martinez served as secondary coach at Georgia from 2001-2004, and defensive coordinator from 2005-2009.  He has been a member of the Oklahoma defensive staff since the 2010 season.  

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