Carlos Osorio/AP
By Thayer Evans
December 23, 2014

Utah defensive coordinator Kalani Sitake and defensive line coach Ilaisa Tuiaki will join the staff of new Oregon State coach Gary Andersen, a source told

Sitake is one of college football’s brightest young defensive coordinators. His attacking defense leads the FBS in sacks (55) this season and has perennially been one of the nation’s best units since he became the Utes’ defensive coordinator in 2009.

Sitake first worked under Andersen on the offensive side of the ball in 2003 as Southern Utah's running backs and tight ends coach during Andersen's lone year leading the Thunderbirds. The next year Sitake dropped tailbacks and added offensive line responsibilities. His experience on both sides of the ball, combined with his recruiting prowess, is expected to make him an FBS head coach sooner than later.

• SCHNELL: New coach Andersen just what Oregon State needs

Sitake rejoined Andersen at Utah in 2005 when Andersen became the defensive coordinator and Sitake was hired to coach linebackers. Sitake then succeeded Andersen as defensive coordinator in '09 when Andersen left the Utes to become Utah State's head coach.

Tuiaki got his start coaching at the college level under Andersen as a defensive graduate assistant at Utah in 2008. He followed Andersen to Utah State in '09 and coached the Aggies for three years, first as the running backs coach and special teams coordinator before adding recruiting coordinator duties in his final year. Tuiaki returned to Utah in '12 as the fullbacks and tight ends coach but switched back to the defensive side of the ball as the defensive line coach in '13.

Sitake and Tuiaki now must shore up an Oregon State defense that allowed 5.7 yards per play this season, 82nd in the country and 9th in the Pac-12. The Beavers went 5-7 and gave up 35 or more points in six of their seven losses.

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