Navy football hires two offensive assistants with ties to new offensive coordinator

Navy football hires two offensive assistants with ties to new offensive coordinator

Navy football is adding two assistants who previously worked for new offensive coordinator Drew Cronic at Mercer.

Second-year head coach Brian Newberry on Wednesday also announced several staff changes to accommodate the new arrivals.

Jay Guillermo, who only recently joined the Mercer staff, has been hired as offensive line coach. Guillermo spent the 2023 season at East Tennessee State, which boasted one of the top rushing attacks in the Southern Conference last season.

“Jay has a wealth of knowledge in multiple offensive schemes and will create a culture of passion, toughness and grit,” Newberry said in a statement. “He will bring instant credibility with current players and recruits.”

Tommy Laurendine, who coached Navy’s fullbacks last season, will now assist Guillermo coaching the offensive line. Ivin Jasper, Navy’s longtime quarterbacks coach, will add the fullback position to his duties.

Also coming to Annapolis from Mercer is David Cole, who held the title of associate head coach and special teams coordinator under Cronic. Cole will coach Navy’s tight ends, replacing Jon Williams.

“David is an exceptional mentor and leader of young men. He is a detailed teacher and an outstanding recruiter,” Newberry said. “He has a great understanding of the culture we want to create offensively.”

Williams, entering his second year with the program, will now serve as director of scouting and special assistant to the head coach.

Guillermo was a dominant offensive lineman at Clemson from 2012 through 2016. During his time with the Tigers, Clemson went 60-9, captured a pair of Atlantic Coast Conference titles and made five bowl appearances.

Guillermo appeared in 46 games with 29 starts over his collegiate career, playing more than 2,550 snaps. He was voted as a permanent captain as the starting center for the 2016 Clemson squad that went 14-1 and beat Alabama in the national championship game.

Guillermo began his coaching career as a graduate assistant at Georgia State and his first full-time job as an assistant was as tight ends coach at Western Carolina. He coached the offensive line at Carson-Newman and served as a graduate assistant at Virginia.

“It is an honor to be a part of the great history and tradition that surrounds the Naval Academy,” Guillermo said in the release. “I am greatly looking forward to working with the young men here and creating a family amongst our offensive linemen that lives on and off the field.”

Cronic, who resigned as Mercer head coach to become Navy offensive coordinator, has coached alongside Cole for six years. They were together for two years at Lenoir Rhyne and four years at Mercer.

Cole coached cornerbacks at Mercer and has primarily worked on the defensive side of the ball during his 17 years as a collegiate assistant. He spent nine years at California University of Pennsylvania as secondary coach, passing defense coordinator and recruiting coordinator.

“I am excited to be a part of the Naval Academy and its rich football tradition and history,” Cole said in the release. “I am looking forward to loving, mentoring and developing elite midshipmen on and off the field. Go Navy! Beat Army!!”

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