Reports: KU set to hire D.K. McDonald as Peterson’s replacement

photo by: AP Photo/Matt Rourke

Philadelphia Eagles defensive backs coach D.K. McDonald speaks with members of the media during a news conference at the NFL football team's training facilities in Philadelphia, Thursday, June 1, 2023.

The Kansas football team has apparently wasted little time selecting a replacement for former co-defensive coordinator and defensive backs coach Jordan Peterson, as The Athletic and 247Sports both reported Friday evening that KU is set to hire D.K. McDonald to the same role.

McDonald will join from the NFL level, where he most recently served as the Philadelphia Eagles’ defensive backs coach in 2023 after taking on the role of assistant defensive backs coach in 2021 and 2022.

He is well acquainted with the Big 12 Conference, as he worked on Matt Campbell’s staff at Iowa State from 2016 to 2020, initially overseeing cornerbacks and then switching to safeties (which at KU are defensive coordinator Brian Borland’s position group). Other collegiate stops include Toledo, William & Mary, Indiana University of Pennsylvania and his alma mater Edinboro.

Peterson left KU to take a similar position with Texas A&M on Jan. 22.

KU returns a pair of decorated starting corners in Cobee Bryant and Mello Dotson for the 2024 season, whom McDonald will be tasked with elevating further, but the Jayhawks will also need to cultivate depth below those two, as the remainder of the unit consists largely of unproven underclassmen and a previously injured transfer in Damarius McGhee.

McDonald may also be charged with picking up some of the slack in recruiting left by Peterson’s departure, as his predecessor was responsible for creating a pipeline to Arizona that paid early dividends in the form of four signees in the 2024 class.

This story will be updated.


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