Missouri promotes Barry Odom to head coaching role

Missouri has named defensive coordinator Barry Odom as its new head coach.

Odom, 39, agreed to a five-year contract to replace Gary Pinkel, who retired earlier this month due to health reasons.

"We had the opportunity to visit with a number of excellent coaches throughout our search. At the conclusion of that process, coach Odom was the clear choice to serve as our next coach," said Missouri athletic director Mack Rhoades in a release from the school. "He is a man of high integrity and possesses all the qualities you look for in a successful head coach."

Odom began at Missouri since 2003, beginning as an administrative graduate assistant before joining the coaching staff as a safeties coach in 2009. He was Memphis' defensive coordinator from 2012-2014 before returning to Missouri this season. His 2015 defense ranked No. 9 in the nation this year in allowing 302 yards per game.

The move will help maintain one of the SEC's top defenses. Prior to Odom's return in 2015, Missouri won back-to-back SEC East titles with a stellar pass rush featuring eventual NFL draft picks such as Kony Ealy, Michael Sam, Shane Ray and Markus Golden.

Odom's salary remains unclear. He'll be introduced in a news conference Friday.

Memphis hired its new coach Thursday as well, naming Arizona State offensive coordinator Mike Norvell, according to the Memphis Commercial-Appeal. Norvell replaces Justin Fuente, who led the Tigers to a 9-3 season before accepting the coaching opening at Virginia Tech earlier this week.

Follow Chase Goodbread on Twitter *@ChaseGoodbread*

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