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Dave Wannstedt tapped into his Florida past to find the newest member of his coaching staff.

Bernard Clark Jr., a standout player on Wannstedt's great defenses at the University of Miami during the late 1980s, was named Pitt's linebacker coach in February.

Clark himself was a linebacker for the Miami Hurricanes from 1985-89 and played on two national championship teams ('87 and '89).

He was a prominent contributor during Wannstedt's tenure as Miami's defensive coordinator from 1986-88, a three-year stretch that saw the Hurricanes limit its opponents to just 2.2 yards per rush and 10.9 points per game.

In the 1988 Orange Bowl against No. 1 Oklahoma, Clark started at middle linebacker and collected 14 tackles, including 12 solo stops, to earn Most Valuable Player honors. The Hurricanes topped the Sooners, 20-14, to cap a 12-0 season and claim the national title.

Clark joins Pitt after serving as the defensive coordinator at Hampton University during the 2009 season.

"I always loved the way Bernard played for us at Miami," Wannstedt said. "He was not only tough and aggressive, but also very smart and instinctive. He was a real leader in the huddle and I know he'll bring those same great qualities to his coaching at Pitt.

"Our players are really going to benefit from his teaching and experience. Bernard is very enthusiastic and personable. He'll be a major asset for us recruiting, especially in Florida."

"It is an honor to join the University of Pittsburgh," Clark said. "You aren't just joining a college team at Pitt -- you're joining a tremendous program with outstanding history. When you walk into a school to recruit and you have the name `Pitt' on your shirt, it means something. It means tradition, nine national titles, players like Tony Dorsett, Hugh Green, Dan Marino, Rickey Jackson, Larry Fitzgerald and so many others. I'm excited to get started."

Clark began his collegiate coaching career at James Madison University, where he coached defensive ends for two seasons (1998-99). He then moved to Liberty University, serving as linebacker coach and overseeing special teams from 2000-03.

Clark had two stints at Florida International University (FIU), initially serving as defensive coordinator and linebackers coach during the 2004 and '05 seasons. He then spent a year in the Big East Conference at the University of South Florida, coaching the Bulls' defensive line in 2006, before returning to FIU for the '07 and '08 seasons.

Clark graduated from Miami in 1989 with a bachelor's degree in business administration. He was a third-round selection of the Cincinnati Bengals in the 1990 draft and spent three seasons in the NFL, including time with the Bengals and Seattle Seahawks. Clark also played two years in the Arena Football League with the Orlando Predators (1994 and '96).

A native of Tampa, Fla., Clark was a decorated athlete at Leto High School. His wife's name is Tammy.

Bernard Clark Jr.

Bernard  Clark Jr.


Alma Mater:
Miami (Fla.) '89

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