Daily Archive for December 28th, 2008

Gus Malzahn interview on ESPN about Wildcat package

Gus Malzahn, the creator of the Wild (cat-hog-tiger) package:

Gus Malzahn

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Tulsa co-offensive coordinator Gus Malzahn, who has established himself as one of college football’s most productive offensive minds in just three years, has agreed to become Auburn’s offensive coordinator and quarterback coach.

The Malzahn hire comes just two days after Chizik announced that James Willis would remain at Auburn as a defensive assistant.

Malzahn, 43, has engineered the nation’s No. 2 ranked offense at Tulsa this season averaging 565.1 yards and 47.4 points per game. The Golden Hurricane averaged 254.9 rushing yards per game and 310.2 passing yards per game.

Senior quarterback David Johnson was second in NCAA passing efficiency completing 243-of-375 passes (64.8%) for 3,866 yards and 43 touchdowns with 18 interceptions.

In 2007, his first season at Tulsa, Malzahn guided the nation’s No. 1 ranked offense averaging 543.9 yards per game. The Hurricane ranked third nationally for passing, fifth for pass efficiency and 10th for scoring offense.

Malzahn broke into college coaching as the offensive coordinator and receivers coach at Arkansas in 2006. He was named the Rivals.com National Offensive Coordinator of the Year as Arkansas had the nation’s fourth-ranked rushing offense and also ranked among the top-35 nationally in total offense and scoring offense and finished with a 10-4 record.

Under his tutelage, Arkansas had the nation’s top running back tandem with Heisman trophy runner-up Darren McFadden and fellow All-American Felix Jones.

Before moving to the college ranks, Malzahn spent 14 seasons as a successful Arkansas High School head coach, where he led five teams to the state championship game and won three titles.

In 2007, Malzahn’s first Tulsa offense ranked as the nation’s top offense, gaining 543.9 yards per game. The Hurricane also led Conference USA in passing, scoring, touchdown passes and passing efficiency, while ranking third nationally for passing, fifth for pass efficiency and 10th for scoring offense.

“Gus is one of the great offensive minds in college football and we are very excited to having him join the Auburn staff,” Chizik said. “His track record at all levels of coaching is remarkable and his offenses have been extremely successful both running and passing the ball. It’s truly impressive that he oversees an offense that is in the top 10 nationally in all five major offensive statistical categories. We’re looking forward to having Gus on board.”

Tulsa’s offense in 2007 established nine team school records and 12 individual records. The Hurricane also set nine Conference USA team records, while Tulsa quarterback Paul Smith established new C-USA single-season marks for total yards, TDs responsible for, passing yards and TD passes.

A Fort Smith, Ark., native, Malzahn will join the Auburn staff after Tulsa’s GMAC Bowl game versus Ball State on Jan. 6 in Mobile.

Malzahn spent the 2006 season as offensive coordinator and receivers coach at Arkansas. During his tenure, the Razorbacks finished with a 10-4 record, were SEC West Division Champions and were ranked 15th nationally.

Under Malzahn’s direction, Arkansas not only had the nation’s fourth-ranked rushing offense, but also ranked among the top-35 nationally in total offense and scoring offense. He was named the Rivals.com National Offensive Coordinator of the Year in 2006.

Malzahn spent 14 seasons as a successful Arkansas High School head coach, from 1991-2005, where he led five teams to the state championship game and won three titles.

Before becoming a college coach at Arkansas in 2006, Malzahn was the head coach at Springdale High School for five years (2001-05). He led the Bulldogs to two state championship game appearances, 2002 and 2005. Malzahn’s 2005 team posted a 14-0 record, won the state’s Class 5A championship, outscored its opponents 664-118 and was ranked among the top-10 teams in the country.

Malzahn has been an offensive coordinator for three seasons, with his greatest success during the past two years at Tulsa. He was offensive coordinator for one season at Arkansas, in 2006. At TU, Malzahn’s hurry-up, no-huddle offense, worked in conjunction with Hand, was the nation’s best in 2007, leading the country in total offense (544.0 yards per game) and was sixth in points scored (41.1). This season, it ranked second (565.1, 47.4) in those categories.

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