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Chargers Name New Defensive Coordinator

Manusky it is

By Michael Gehlken
|  Saturday, Jan 15, 2011  |  Updated 11:53 AM PDT
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Headshot in 2008 of Greg Manusky, 49ers defensive coordinator.

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The Chargers have chosen the man to lead the NFL's top-ranked defense.

Greg Manusky, former 49ers defensive coordinator and a Chargers linebacker coach from 2003-2006, signed a two-year contract to become the team's defensive coordinator Friday. He replaces Ron Rivera, who was named the Carolina Panthers' head coach on Tuesday.

Manusky, 43, interviewed with the Chargers on Thursday and chose to sign with San Diego over Arizona and Dallas.

He described his defensive philosophy as "hardcore, relentless, getting after people" in a media release.

"I’m going to bring some new ideas but also continue the foundation that they’ve already had and just build on it," Manusky said. "I think with the players that we have, the sky’s the limit.”

Chargers coach Norv Turner said preparing for the 49ers defense this season gave him a greater appreciation for the job Manusky does. Turner also interviewed current linebackers coach John Pagano and secondary coach Steve Wilks.

Manusky is expected to arrive in San Diego sometime in the middle of next week.

"He's got a toughness about him," Turner said. "He's got a high level of energy about him. I think it'll help our guys. Being able to keep the rest of our defensive staff -- they did a great job last year -- that is a bonus for us. I think we come away with an outstanding defensive staff."

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