San Diego State cornerbacks coach and recruiting coordinator Tony White has landed a Bill Walsh NFL Minority Coaching Fellowship with the San Francisco 49ers, according to a source.
The rising White has coached the Aztecs’ cornerbacks since 2009 and has been the program’s recruiting coordinator the last six years. This past season, San Diego State was second in the FBS in interceptions (23) and 10th in passing efficiency defense (108.71). The unit was led White’s star protégé, cornerback Damontae Kazee, who was the Mountain West Defensive Player of the Year.
The annual coaching fellowship was launched in 1987 and is aimed to create more job opportunities for minority coaches.
The 5’11”, 185-pound Kazee, who will be a redshirt senior this season, had eight interceptions last year, which was second-best in the FBS and tied the single-season Mountain West record. San Diego State won the conference championship this past season with an 11–3 record, capping the season with a Hawaii Bowl victory.
The 37-year-old White also tutored ex-Aztecs cornerback Leon McFadden, a three-time first-team All-Mountain West selection and third-round pick in the 2013 NFL draft by the Cleveland Browns. Prior to working at San Diego State, White was New Mexico’s linebackers coach for a season.
That was after he was a graduate assistant at his alma mater, UCLA, in 2007 following a stint as the coach at St. Genevieve High in Panorama City, Calif. He was a linebacker in the CFL for four seasons after he finished playing for the Bruins from 1997–2000.
The 49ers hired new head coach Chip Kelly in January after firing his predecessor Jim Tomsula on the heels of a 5–11 campaign last season. Kelly had a 26–21 record in three seasons as coach of the Philadelphia Eagles before being fired in late December.