By Adam Hoge-
(CBS) — The Bears went to Mobile, Ala. this week with two coaching vacancies, but returned home with both of them filled.
The team confirmed the hirings of Paul Pasqualoni (defensive line) and Reggie Herring (linebackers) Thursday morning, completing the 2014 coaching staff.
The two coaches have a combined 75 years of coaching experience, 14 of which are in the NFL. They worked together with the Cowboys in 2010, when Pasqualoni took over as defensive coordinator and Herring was the linebackers coach.
Both Pasqualoni and Herring have experience in 3-4 and 4-3 defenses, which is no surprise as the Bears are likely headed toward a hybrid defensive scheme next season. Herring spent the last three seasons coaching linebackers in the Texans’ 3-4 defense and the Bears’ press release Thursday morning pointed out that “Connor Barwin made the transition to outside linebacker from defensive end and tied for third in the AFC with a team-high 11.5 sacks” under Herring’s watch in 2011. Shea McClellin is expected to make a similar switch for the Bears this offseason.
Pasqualoni, who was seen sitting with Bears’ coaches this week at Senior Bowl practices, spent the last three seasons as UConn’s head coach, but was fired four games into the 2013 season. He has experience coaching linebackers, tight ends and the defensive line in the NFL.
Pasqualoni replaces Mike Phair, who was fired along with linebackers coach Tim Tibesar earlier this month. Phair will reportedly join former Bears head coach Lovie Smith’s new staff in Tampa and serve as assistant defensive line coach. Tibesar has not landed a new job yet, but both he and Phair were in Mobile this week.
Adam Hoge covers the Bears for CBSChicago.com and is a frequent contributor to 670 The Score. Follow him on Twitter at @AdamHoge.