Family trees sprouting on the sidelines

Some think that the only jobs that stay in the family are running a restaurant or keeping a farm. Nowadays, the sidelines of football teams are seeing more and more familiar last names.

Family trees have sprouted on-campus as well as in other universities.

The patriarch of the “Turner tree” is Head Coach Ron Turner.

Turner’s brother, Norv Turner, is currently the offensive coordinator for the Cleveland Browns and Ron Turner has two sons, Morgan Turner and Cameron Turner.

Morgan Turner, who was on the staff of the Panthers for a couple of weeks during spring semester, is currently the tight ends coach at Stanford University.

Cameron Turner, who came to the University from Head Coach Leslie Frazier’s staff with the Minnesota Vikings, is currently the quarterbacks and receivers coach under his father.

“I love coaching with my dad,” C. Turner said. “At first I wasn’t sure about it. I mean I never played with him, never coached with him, never worked for him, never worked with him, I didn’t know how it would be, but I have learned so much. You don’t realize how much you don’t know until you get on a new staff and start learning stuff.”

R. Turner spoke on C. Turner  being on his staff.

“It’s been great and awesome. It is all I thought it would be and more,” R. Turner said. “It is great having him here and watching him grow and hopefully I am helping him in that aspect. He is contributing in helping the kids grow and in game plan. He has a great football mind. I didn’t really have to call because we had talked about it before, but it was one of the first calls I made.”

C. Turner admitted that he had a small wish about working with his dad.

“I always wanted to learn his offense. I have been around it my whole life, but I never really knew it,” he said.

Both spoke on how it was a struggle to bring C. Turner down here.

“I wasn’t sure if he was going to come because Leslie Frazier wanted to keep him. They gave him a promotion and a raise to try and keep him, I know that they think the world of him, but I am happy he came,” R. Turner said.

“Yeah, I didn’t want to leave. I love the Vikings and I love Coach Frazier. I really didn’t want to leave, but Miami was going to be hard to beat,  being with family, but it was my second year and I was getting comfortable in Minn. – the NFL is great, but I couldn’t pass up the opportunity,” Cameron said.

The other family tree is the Shankweiler, with Run-Game Coordinator and Offensive Line Coach Steve Shankweiler at the top.

S. Shankweiler, graduate of Davidson University received his masters in physical education from Georgia State University and has been coaching football since 1980, when he was at The Citadel, The Military College of South Carolina. S. Shankweiler went on to East Carolina University – who the Panthers will play on Saturday, Nov. 2 in Miami – in 1987 and had a third stint with the Pirates from 2005 to 2009.

ECU was the home of Panthers’ Tight Ends and Tackles Coach Kort Shankweiler. K. Shankweiler, quarterback, fullback and tight end, was a four time letterman during his tenure as a Pirate under Head Coach Skip Holtz who himself is in a coaching tree with father Lou Holtz. The Panthers played against S. Holtz’s new team in the Bulldogs of Louisiana Tech University on Oct. 26. During K. Shankweiler’s time as a fullback, he was the lead blocker for Chris Johnson, current Tennessee Titans running-back.

“It’s been ok being on a staff with my dad,” K. Shankweiler said. “I have learned a lot from him. It was a little different at first, but when we step on the practice field it is coach and coach. Once we leave the field and the office it is back to a family relationship; at the same time, it is strictly professional when we are here. He lets me know if I have to get something corrected. I have learned a lot from him.”

About the Author

Rhys Williams
: Sports Director, Class of 2016, Physical Education: Coaching (Major), Communication Arts (Minor), Sports Enthusiast with a Focus on Football and Track & Field.

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