Griffin Whitmer: I particularly like this hire because it shows Pat Hobbs has no fear. He easily could've gone with the safe hire and gone with Al Golden. However, he took his time with the search and clearly made sure he got the right guy for the job in Ash. Ash has a much higher ceiling and will immediately fix the defense. He is a specialist when it comes to turning around defenses and working with the secondary. I am not too sure about his NJ ties, but he should easily improve recruiting. He already has great relationships with current Rutgers commit Patrice Rene and current Rutgers target Jordan Fuller. I think this is a great hire and Pat Hobbs is off to a great start.
Bob Cancro: Go back a few weeks when most thought Flood would, in fact, be fired and recall how many people were fearful that Julie Hermann might be making this decision. Then look at the response to Pat Hobbs' hiring; cheers and a thank goodness he'll be hiring the next coach. Well, he did. And based on his background, knowledge, and intelligence, who are we mere mortals to criticize it? I do think it is a little off from what was being kicked around when Barchi's 'money will not be an issue' comment got out. But then consider that maybe, as has been mentioned a lot on boards and tweets, money may be getting set aside to hire a Big Ten-class staff, including high-end OC and DC. I'm very good with that. Chris Ash may not be here forever, which is concerning to a degree. But he has good creds and if he is what we want/need now and can build the team to a competitive level in the Big Ten, I am more than satisfied. I was very torn about who could/should be here. I was very concerned that Schiano might be back. Now, my feeling is 'Coach Ash, go get'em'.
Dave White: I think this a bold and possibly very exciting hire. It, of course, depends on the assistants Chris Ash hires. The thing about Ash is this: if he can bring in a good staff and recruiting class, there are enough pieces in play that you'll know whether he's the guy a lot quicker than with Schiano. Not a total rebuild.
Aaron Breitman: There is no such thing as a perfect hire, but I think hiring Chris Ash is a very good hire and the right choice. It's not surprising that new athletic director Patrick Hobbs went with his own man here. However, this choice is not as out of the box as some think. It makes perfect sense to target a power five coordinator at one of the best programs in the country. It makes even more sense to take the defensive coordinator from the defending national champions in your own conference, the Big Ten. The fact that Ash also worked at Wisconsin and Arkansas as a defensive coordinator is a positive, having experiences at multiple major programs in the best two conferences in college football. If the biggest argument against him is that he has never been a head coach, well I am fine with that. As I said, it's better than taking a former head coach coming off failure. Ash has potential to turn the defense around very quickly. We all know the key is surrounding himself with a high level staff. I trust Hobbs understands this and will give Ash every opportunity to do so. It's exciting to have a rising coach with a great background come in and try and turn things around. I think he will!
Andy Egan: I love this hire. I think Ash is going to be the defensive analog to Tom Herman, and that is working out rather well for Houston. I can't wait to see him fill out his staff and hit the recruiting trail. Jordan Fuller and Rashan Gary, we're coming for you!! The thing I hated most about watching the Flood era teams was the marshmallow soft defenses - Ash is going to fix that damn quick. Back to that gritty nasty D from the mid to late 2010s, and I couldn't be happier.
Ray Ransom: I love, love, love this move. While I'm the biggest Schiano fan of anyone, it's clear it was time for a fresh start and Ash is exactly that. No clouds over his head, no scandals, no reputation. Just a well regarded coach who is a master of his craft. He's been studying for years under some great coaches and he's ready to run a program his way. Great hire by Hobbs and I'm excited to see Ash build his staff out.
Scott Logan: I wrote a little piece on the possibility of Ash coming to Rutgers the other day, and while it's not the Dan Mullen/Mark Richt hires some fans (irrationally) hoped for, by all accounts this is a great hire. Ash has been a defensive coordinator for five years, and besides a rough one-year stint at Arkansas, all of his defenses have ranked in the top 15 in the nation. I don't know much about his recruiting prowess, but his profile on 247Sports shows a few four- and five-stars to his name. I have confidence Ash can lead this team and fix our broken defense, but Rutgers' work isn't done yet. A lot rides on who is hired as offensive coordinator. Assuming McDaniels isn't retained, the next OC will be Rutgers' seventh in seven years. Ash needs an experienced coordinator to give Rutgers some consistency on the offensive side of the ball. While the OC hire will be key, this looks like great get for new AD Pat Hobbs.