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Dorrell Adds So'oto To Coaching Staff

Dec 30, 2021

BOULDER — University of Colorado head football coach Karl Dorrell announced on Thursday that he has added Vic So'oto to his staff as defensive line coach.
As with all hires of this nature, it is subject to the approval of CU's Board of Regents.
So'oto, 34, is joining the Colorado program from the University of Southern California, where he coached the Trojan's defensive line the past two seasons (and the outside linebackers last fall) and was one of USC's top recruiters.
"Vic is an impressive young coach," Dorrell said.  "He is a great communicator, teacher and developer who relates very well with his players.   His body of work speaks volumes, and I know our players will gravitate to his teaching style."
"I am excited to become a part of Karl Dorrell's staff at the University of Colorado," So'oto said.  "Teaching and building are my passions and I can't wait to get started in Boulder."
Chris Wilson will continue as CU's defensive coordinator, but will switch from coaching the defensive line to a position to be determined.
A Closer Look at Vic So'oto
So'oto, who played three years in the National Football League, coached defensive lines on the FBS level the last five seasons, two at Southern California and three at Virginia.  A fast-riser in the profession, he earned his first full-time position just two years after retiring from professional football. 
In 2020, he coached defensive lineman Marlon Tuipulotu, who earned first-team All-Pac-12 honors and went on to be drafted in the sixth round by the Philadelphia Eagles; two others earned All-Conference accolades, Drake Jackson (second-team) and Nick Figueroa (honorable mention).  Another of his players, Tuli Tuipulotu, was named a 2020 second-team Freshman All-American and was a first-team All-Pac-12 performer as a sophomore in 2021, when Jackson repeated as a second-teamer.  He also recruiting and signed who many rated as the nation's top recruit, defensive lineman Korey Foreman from Corona, Calif., in USC's 2021 class.
In his three years (2017-19) coaching Virginia's defensive line under head coach Bronco Mendenhall (his college head coach as a player), UVA's defense ranked high nationally in several statistical categories.  In 2019, when the Cavaliers won the Atlantic Coast Conference's Coastal Division and earned a berth against Florida in the Orange Bowl, UVA was ninth nationally in sacks (3.3) and 22nd in tackles for loss (7.1).  In 2018, Virginia was 20th in the NCAA in total defense (330.5) and 21st in scoring defense (20.1), as well as 12th in passing efficiency defense (107.6) and 16th in pass defense (183.0).  Virginia defeated South Carolina in the Belk Bowl, 28-0, the first time an SEC team was shut out in a bowl by a non-SEC school since 1975.  In 2017, UVA's pass defense was seventh in the nation (165.8) when the Cavaliers lost to Navy in the Military Bowl.
So'oto began his coaching career as a defensive graduate assistant at Virginia in 2016, where he took postgraduate courses in Business Administration.  In 2015, he was a football intern at Brigham Young, his alma mater, when the Cougars finished 9-4 and played rival Utah in the Las Vegas Bowl.
So'oto was a four-year (2005-07-09-10) letterman at BYU where he began his career as a tight end and finished his final three seasons on defense (linebacker and defensive end); he earned first-team All-Mountain West honors as a senior.  During his career, he suffered two season-ending injuries (in 2006 and 2008) and was granted a sixth year of eligibility by the NCAA.  He had 12 receptions for 124 yards on offense, and on defense, he recorded 65 tackles (16 for losses including six quarterback sacks), along with two forced fumbles and an interception.  He earned his bachelor's degree in Geography from BYU in 2010.
So'oto played linebacker in the NFL, signing as an undrafted free agent with the Green Bay Packers, where he spent the better part of two seasons (2011-12).  He also played with the Oakland Raiders (2012), Washington Redskins (2012) and Arizona Cardinals (2013).  At Green Bay, two of his teammates included former Buffaloes Mason Crosby and Brad Jones.  He also was picked up briefly by the New Orleans Saints in 2013 and Pittsburgh Steelers in 2014, but did not make the regular season roster.
A second cousin of the late Pro Football Hall of Fame linebacker Junior Seau, he played football and volleyball at Carlsbad (Calif.) High School.  He is married to the former Ashley Moea'i, and the couple has five children, daughters Fia and Ave, and sons Tre, Samson and Mack.  He was selected by the American Football Coaches Association to its 2020 35 Under 35 Coaches Leadership Institute.  (Last name is pronounced so-oh-toe)

2015 Brigham Young Intern
2016 Virginia Graduate Assistant/Defense
2017-19 Virginia Defensive Line
2020 Southern California Defensive Line
2021 Southern California Defensive Line/Outside Linebackers