Vanderbilt coach Clark Lea is closing out 2021 by finalizing his staff on the defensive side of the ball.

Earlier Wednesday, Lea added Larry Black to his staff as defensive line coach, which would end up being the first of 2 hires on the day.

Per a report by college football reporter Bruce Feldman, Lea will also be adding former Virginia assistant Nick Howell to his staff as the Commodores’ defensive backs coach.

Howell spent the last 6 season with the Cavaliers working for Bronco Mendenhall, who resigned his position earlier this month after a 6-6 campaign.

The 41-year-old Howell served as defensive backs coach at UVa and most recently was also the Cavaliers’ co-defensive coordinator.

He spent the previous 9 seasons with Mendenhall at BYU, where in addition to coaching DBs he also had stints coaching outside linebackers and special teams.

Vanderbilt is coming off a 2-10 season in Lea’s first year in Nashville.