BY KERRY EGGERS/PORTLAND TRIBUNE/Former Oregon State football coach will handle the secondary at Central Michigan

COURTESY: SCOBEL WIGGINS - Cory Hall (right) heads to Reser Stadium with the Oregon State Beavers for a game.Cory Hall has landed in what he considers "a very good spot."

The former interim head coach at Oregon State will soon be named as secondary coach at Central Michigan.

"It's a great opportunity," says Hall, 41, via telephone from Erie, Pennsylvania, where he has been spending time with in-laws. "It's a good program, and I get to control the whole (secondary) group."

The Chippewas went 8-5 overall and 6-2 in Mid-American Conference action in their third season under head coach John Bonamego. Bonamego coached 16 years in the NFL, doing mostly special teams.

"I didn't really have a relationship with him, though our paths had crossed," says Hall, who played safety for six seasons in the NFL. "I'm looking forward to working with him."

Though many Oregon State fans hoped Hall would be retained on new head coach Jonathan Smith's staff, he never even got an interview. They had a brief conversation, but that was it.

"Doesn't bother me," Hall says. "It's what I expected. I didn't expect to be retained. I wanted to stay there, but a new coach is going to want to bring in his guys. You watch it happen all across the country. I was optimistic, but I understood."

Hall spent a short time helping with the coaching transition, then retreated to his Corvallis home and spent some vacation time with his wife, Sarah, and their new baby, Isaiah. On Jan. 26, the Halls left Oregon for three weeks in California before heading east to Erie.

Though he wasn't able to break into the win column in his six-game stint as Oregon State's interim head coach after the resignation of Gary Andersen, Hall says his two years at OSU were "a great experience."

"I have a lot of love for Beaver Nation and those fans who had my back," he says. "Same thing for the players. To be able to help a program during a time that was not very favorable was an experience I wouldn't change for anything.

"I learned a lot. It was very productive. I can say I did it. I enjoyed it. I opened a lot of eyes, to say the least."

Hall says many friends and well-wishers made their feelings known in their final weeks in Corvallis.

"The friendships and relationships we made in such a short time were tremendous," he says. "There was a lot of mutual love there, and it was genuine. I'll always look back fondly at my time there."

As for Isaiah Hall, he is growing quickly.

"He is 13 weeks old, and at two months, he was 26 1/2 inches long and 17 pounds," Hall says. "He's a big 'un. He looks like he ate the little guy who was born back there on Nov. 20."

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