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March 14, 2005

Charlottesville, Va. – University of Virginia head football coach Al Groh announced today the hiring of Levern Belin as defensive line coach. Belin replaces Mike London who spent four years on Groh’s staff as defensive line coach and recruiting coordinator. London was named defensive line coach of the NFL’s Houston Texans recently.

Groh also announced Mike Groh will become the program’s recruiting coordinator, while continuing as quarterbacks coach.

Belin (pronounced LEE-vern BEE-lin) brings an impressive playing and coaching resume to Charlottesville, including more than 10 years as an assistant coach in the college ranks.

Most recently he spent one season (2004) at Northern Illinois where he was defensive interior line coach on a 9-3 team that won the Silicon Valley Football Classic.

A native of Marshville, N.C., he was a three-year starter (1988-90) at inside linebacker at Wake Forest under Bill Dooley and finished his career with 182 career tackles. He was recruited as a senior in high school by Groh who was the Demon Deacons’ coach from 1981-86. Current UVa associate head coach and outside linebackers coach Danny Rocco was also involved in recruiting him to Wake Forest.

Belin received his bachelor of science degree in speech communication from Wake Forest in 1991. During his collegiate career, he played alongside his older brother, Warren, who is currently the linebackers coach at Vanderbilt .

The 35-year old Belin launched his college coaching career in 1991 as a graduate assistant working with the defensive backs on Tom Coughlin’s staff at Boston College. He gained his first full-time position the following year as defensive line coach at Boston University and spent the 1993 season as linebackers coach at East Tennessee State.

He spent five seasons at Ball State (1994-98) where he helped guide one of the top run defenses in the Mid-American Conference. He coached the outside linebackers in his first season at the Muncie, Ind., school before handling the defensive ends for his final four seasons. Under his guidance, the defensive ends helped the Cardinals rank first in the MAC and 34th in the nation in fewest yards allowed in 1997. One of his top pupils was DE Keith McKenzie, a seventh-round draft choice of the Green Bay Packers in the 1997 NFL Draft.

After a three-month stint at Connecticut (1999), Belin spent two seasons as defensive line coach at Maryland (1999-2000). During his first season at Maryland, he served on the same staff as Rocco, who was the Terrapins’ outside linebackers coach. Two of his players earned All-ACC honors and were selected in the NFL Draft–Delbert Cowsette (Washington Redskins in 2000) and Kris Jenkins (Carolina Panthers in 2001).

Before moving to Northern Illinois, he spent three seasons at William & Mary (2001-03). He spent his first two seasons as linebackers coach before shifting to defensive line coach in his final season.

In 1996, he participated in the NFL Minority Fellowship Program with the Jacksonville Jaguars, where one of his fellow coaches was current UVa offensive coordinator and O-line coach Ron Prince.

As a prep at Forest Hills (N.C.) High School, he earned All-State and All-America honors in football as a senior. A four-year letterman in football, Belin started 55 consecutive games. He played on the Class 2A state championship team (1984), the Class 3A state runner-up (1985), and Class 3A state semifinalist team (1986).

He is married to the former DeVida Newman of East Chicago, Ind.

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