UCF Football Adds Chinander, Austin, Castro-Walker to Coaching Staff
By Brian Ormiston, UCF // January 9, 2016
ORLANDO, FLORIDA (UCFKnights.com) – The UCF football coaching staff continues to take shape this week as head coach Scott Frost announced on Wednesday he has hired Erik Chinander as the Knights’ defensive coordinator and Greg Austin to the role of offensive line coach.
Marcus Castro-Walker also joins the program to serve as UCF’s director of player development.
New Additions to the UCF Full-Time Coaching Staff
Scott Frost – Head Coach
Greg Austin – Offensive Line Coach
Erik Chinander – Defensive Coordinator
Ryan Held – Assistant Coach
Mario Verduzco – Quarterbacks Coach
Troy Walters – Assistant Coach
“I want to surround myself at UCF with people of great character who are also very intelligent,” said Frost.
“Erik is one of the highest character people I know and one of the most intelligent coaches I’ve ever been around. He’s an incredible recruiter and a huge asset to our program.”
Chinander spent his most recent season as the Oregon outside linebackers coach. Overall, Chinander has coached with Frost for seven seasons at Oregon and Northern Iowa.
In 2015, the Oregon outside linebacker combination of Tyson Coleman (63) and Torrodney Prevot (48) combined for 111 tackles. Coleman was second on the team with 12.0 tackles for loss as well as 4.5 sacks, while he forced a team-high three fumbles.
A year before that, Tony Washington finished second at Oregon with 11.5 tackles for loss and six sacks, forcing three fumbles and recovered three as well.
Prior to his second stint in Eugene, Chinander worked as an assistant to Philadelphia Eagles defensive line coach Jerry Azzinaro where he helped with game and practice plans, coordinating the scout teams and evaluating current and future personnel. The Eagles claimed the NFC East title and boasted a 10-6 record during the 2013 campaign.
Chinander ventured to the NFL following three seasons with Chip Kelly at Oregon, serving as an intern in 2010 and then a graduate assistant from 2011-12. Chinander witnessed three all-conference defensive linemen reach the NFL in Kenny Rowe, Brandon Bair and 2013 No. 3 overall pick in the NFL Draft Dion Jordan.
During the 2012 campaign, Oregon was third in the Pac-12 in scoring defense while it led the league in sacks in 2011.
With Chinander on staff, Oregon reached the BCS National Championship Game in the 2010 season, and it earned victories in the Rose Bowl (2011 season), the Fiesta Bowl (2012 season) and the Rose Bowl (2014 season) while it also reached the Alamo Bowl in 2015.
From 2004-09, Northern Iowa witnessed the versatile Chinander coach the tight ends and make a huge impact in recruiting, but he also assisted with the defensive and specialists scout teams as well as slotbacks. The Panthers won three Missouri Valley Conference titles during that span, and advanced to the FCS national championship in 2005 as well as the semifinals in 2008.
In his first coaching stop in 2003, Chinander was the offensive line and defensive line coach for Ellsworth Community College in Iowa, where he also coordinated the strength and conditioning programs for football and men’s and women’s basketball.
The Panthers finished second in the region and three of his players garnered first-team, all-region status.
Hailing from Allison, Iowa, Chinander was a walk-on offensive lineman for Iowa beginning in 1998. The Hawkeyes would claim the 2001 Alamo Bowl crown and reach the 2003 Orange Bowl after earning the Big 10 crown. After his senior year in 2002, Chinander received the Hawkeyes’ Offensive Team Leader Award.
Chinander earned bachelor’s degrees in health leisure and sports studies, as well as history, in 2003. He and his wife, Megan, have a daughter, Penelope.
2003 – Ellsworth (Iowa) Community College – Offensive Line/Defensive Line
2004-09 – Northern Iowa – Tight Ends
2010 – Oregon – Intern
2011-12 – Oregon – Defensive Graduate Assistant
2013 – Philadelphia Eagles – Assistant Defensive Line
2014-15 – Oregon – Outside Linebackers
“Greg is an amazing person to be around, and has unbelievable work relationships with his players,” said Frost.
“It’s vital for me to have an offensive line coach who understands our offensive system. His experience at Oregon and the Philadelphia Eagles is a perfect fit for what I’m trying to accomplish on the offensive side of the ball.”
Austin spent the past three seasons with the Philadelphia Eagles, and holds two master’s degree in business management and sports management from UCF.
From 2013-15, Austin had a hand in the Eagles’ men up front, serving as assistant offensive line coach for head coach Chip Kelly and position coach Jeff Stoutland. Philadelphia ranked in the top 12 in the NFL each year in yards per game, including the top five in 2013 and 2014.
Austin helped offensive tackle Jason Peters receive a spot in the Pro Bowl all three seasons, while center Jason Kelce and guard Evan Mathis also earned Pro Bowl recognition in 2014. Peters and Mathis grabbed All-Pro accolades in 2013 as well.
Philadelphia’s offensive line paved the way for LeSean McCoy to become the NFL’s leading rusher in 2013, and he finished fourth in 2014. The Eagles made a trip to the 2013 NFL Playoffs thanks to winning the NFC East title with a 10-6 record.
With Austin on staff as an intern in 2010 and a graduate assistant from 2011-12, Oregon carried a 24-4 record and appeared in the BCS National Championship Game his first year and the Ducks won the Rose Bowl and the Fiesta Bowl the next two campaigns.
Oregon ranked in the top five in the country in total offense and scoring offense all three years, including holding down the top spot in both categories in 2010.
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From 2010-12, Oregon claimed eight All-Pac-12 First Team offensive players, running back De’Anthony Thomas was the 2011 Freshman Offensive Co-Player of the Year and quarterback Marcus Mariota was the 2012 Freshman Offensive Player of the Year.
Austin worked alongside Frost all three years with the Ducks, while he was an intern and graduate assistant with Oregon the same years as UCF’s new defensive coordinator Erik Chinander. Austin and Chinander both then went to the Eagles in 2013.
Before entering the coaching ranks, Austin achieved his master’s degree at UCF and also spent time as an event manager at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex at Walt Disney World Resort.
A native of Cypress, Texas, Austin received his bachelor’s degree in management from Nebraska where he was an offensive guard for the Cornhuskers from 2003-06.
In four seasons, he played in 27 games highlighted by becoming just the fifth true freshman in school history to appear on the Nebraska offensive line. Although a knee injury threatened his playing career as a freshman, he went on to play 11 games the following season en route to earning Big 12 All-Academic Second Team honors in 2004-05.
Austin and his wife Kelley have a daughter, Kilyn Elyse, and twin daughters, Kenly Ellis and Kolbe Estel.
2010 – Oregon – Intern
2011-12 – Oregon – Offensive Graduate Assistant
2013-15 – Philadelphia Eagles – Assistant Offensive Line Coach
In his first season as UCF’s director of player development, Marcus Castro-Walker spent the 2014-15 campaigns as the Arizona State director of player personnel.
Castro-Walker began his time with the Sun Devils in 2008 as a graduate assistant with the Office of Student-Athlete Development. When he received his master’s degree in higher and post-secondary education in 2011, he joined the football program as one of three academic coaches from 2011-13.
The ASU program benefitted greatly from Castro-Walker as he helped student-athletes succeed in the classroom and develop life skills away from the football field as well.
Castro-Walker earned his bachelor’s degree in communication studies from Eastern Washington in 2009 where he played linebacker. Born in Toronto, he and his wife Esperanza have a son, Amare, and two daughters, Monica and Esperanza Jr.
2016 UCF Football Season Tickets: Purchase or renew season tickets for the 2016 UCF football campaign now. Call 407-UCF-1000 or visit UCFKnights.com to get put in your deposits for head coach Scott Frost’s first season with the Knights.