Utah All-American Luther Elliss Named Utes Defensive Tackles Coach

Jan 19, 2022, 5:28 PM | Updated: 5:34 pm
Defensive Line Coach Luther Elliss of the Idaho Vandals rallies his defense during second half acti...
Defensive Line Coach Luther Elliss of the Idaho Vandals rallies his defense during second half action against the Louisiana Monroe Warhawks on October 28, 2017 at the Kibbie Dome in Moscow, Idaho. Idaho won the game 31-23. (Photo by Loren Orr/Getty Images)
(Photo by Loren Orr/Getty Images)

SALT LAKE CITY – Utah Utes head football coach Kyle Whittingham announced that he has hired former All-American Luther Elliss as the defensive tackles coach.

Luther Elliss joins the Utah coaching staff after spending five seasons at the University of Idaho as the defensive line coach. In 2021, the Vandals’ defensive line was No. 16 in the FCS in sacks per game at 2.82. Two of his players earned All-Big Sky honors, including Charles Akanno and Noah Elliss.

During his playing career at Utah, Elliss was a consensus All-American and WAC Defensive Player of the Year in 1994. He was taken by the Detroit Lions with the 20th overall pick in the 1995 NFL Draft. Elliss spent nine seasons with the Lions.

In 134 games played, Elliss had 331 tackles and 29 sacks, while earning Pro Bowl appearances in 1999 and 2000. His son Jonah is a defensive end for the Utes.

Elliss rounds out the coaching hires for Utah. Kiel McDonald left for USC and Sione Po’uha retired to spend more time with his family. Whittingham hired Quinton Ganther to replace McDonald, leaving Elliss the final hire of the off-season.

Trevor Allen is a Utah Utes Insider for KSLSports.com, Co-Host of Faith, Family and Football podcast with Clark Phillips III and host of the Crimson Corner podcast. Follow him on Twitter: @TrevorASports.

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Utah All-American Luther Elliss Named Utes Defensive Tackles Coach