Jan. 27, 2011STANFORD PAGEScott Reiss
Stanford will use defensive coordinator by committee this year, Comcast SportsNet Bay Area has learned from a source close to the situation.
The two men at the helm of the defense will be Jason Tarver and Derek Mason.
Tarver, 36, has spent the past 10 years with the 49ers and the last six as outside linebackers coach. First hired as an offensive quality control coach under Steve Mariucci in 2001, Tarver has worked under Mariucci, Dennis Erickson, Mike Nolan and Mike Singletary.
Tarver played defensive back and wing back at Pleasanton's Foothill High. He attended Santa Clara University, but played football at Saratoga's West Valley College in 1994 and 1995 after the Broncos eliminated the football.
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Tarver served as an as an assistant coach (1996-97) at West Valley College, where he worked with linebackers, defensive backs and special teams.
He brings a distinguished academic background to the Stanford campus. He holds a bachelors degree in chemistry from Santa Clara and is a member of Phi Beta Kappa. He received a masters degree in biochemistry and molecular biology from UCLA.
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Mason joined Stanford last season, leaving the Minnesota Vikings to become the Cardinal's secondary coach.
In three seasons as the Minnesota Vikings assistant defensive backs coach, the Vikings established themselves as one of the top defenses in the NFL. In 2009, the Vikings ranked second in the league in total defense and ranked third in passing defense.
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The former Northern Arizona University standout has also held assistant coaching positions at Mesa Community College (1994), Weber State (1995-96), Idaho State (1997-98), Bucknell (1999-2001), Utah (2002), St. Mary's College (2003), New Mexico State (2004) and Ohio University (2005-06).