Utah State names Blake Anderson as head coach

Graphic Courtesy: Utah State University

LOGAN, Utah, Dec. 13, 2020 (Gepahrdt Daily) — Utah State University has announced that Blake Anderson has been named the Aggies’ 29th head football coach.

A press conference to formally introduce Anderson will be held on Monday, Dec. 14, at 11 a.m., and will be streamed live here, said a news release from Utah State. The university will also stream a question-and-answer session with Anderson at noon, giving Aggie fans an opportunity to interact with the new head coach.

Additionally, Anderson will make his first public appearance at Old Chicago on Monday night for the Utah State Coaches Radio Show, which airs live on the Aggie Radio Network and will be streamed live via USU’s social platforms at 6 p.m.

“On behalf of Aggie nation, I am thrilled to announce Blake Anderson as our new head football coach,” said Utah State University Vice President and Director of Athletics John Hartwell. “I have watched his Arkansas State teams over the past seven years, first when I was at Troy and then here at USU, and I am excited for our fans to witness first-hand his high-octane offense and championship brand of football.

“Blake is an outstanding football coach and an even better person. His emphasis on total development of his student-athletes in the classroom, on the field and in preparation for life after football, will be a great asset for Utah State University.”

Anderson comes to Utah State after spending the past seven years as the head coach at Arkansas State, the news release said, leading the Red Wolves to six-consecutive winning seasons and six-straight bowl games from 2014-2019, to go along with back-to-back Sun Belt Conference Championships in 2015 and 2016.

During that six-year stretch, the Red Wolves broke 12 school records, including 494.8 yards of total offense per game, 4,106 passing yards and 38 touchdown passes in 2017, 520 points scored and 69 total touchdowns in 2015, and 6,174 yards of total offense and 1,024 total plays in 2014.

Entering the 2020 season, the Red Wolves had won at least seven games, including at least five league games, every year under Anderson, including a nine-victory campaign in 2015 and eight-win seasons in 2016, 2018 and 2019. In all, Anderson posted a 51-37 (.580) record during his seven seasons at Arkansas State, including a 38-18 (.679) mark in the Sun Belt Conference. Of those 51 wins, 40 were by double digits.

“I am beyond excited and grateful for the opportunity to lead the Utah State football program,” said Anderson. “This is an unbelievable place with a great tradition and history of success, both on and off the field, that we look forward to building upon. I can’t wait to get started with the guys and I look forward to a packed Maverik Stadium next fall.”

Before joining Arkansas State, Anderson was the offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach at both North Carolina from 2012-2013 and Southern Miss from 2010-2011. His offense helped lead the two programs to 34 victories, three bowl game appearances and two conference or divisional titles.

Anderson came to Southern Miss after spending the 2007 campaign at Louisiana-Lafayette as the offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach. The Ragin’ Cajuns posted the sixth-ranked rushing offense nationally (251.6) in 2007 and became the Sun Belt’s first-ever 3,000-yard rushing team (3,019).

Anderson, who was in private business from 2004-2006, worked at Middle Tennessee as the co-offensive coordinator and wide receivers coach from 2002-2004, and at New Mexico from 1999-2001 as the wide receivers and running backs coach, the news release said.

Before joining the Football Bowl Subdivision ranks, Anderson worked at Trinity Valley Community College from 1995-1998 in Athens, Texas, where he helped lead the Cardinals to the 1997 NJCAA National Championship.

Anderson began his coaching career at Eastern New Mexico in 1992 as graduate assistant and 1993, full-time, where he tutored the wide receivers. He then moved on to Howard Payne University in Brownwood, Texas, to coach the wide receivers in 1994. HPU won the Texas IAA conference title.

A two-year letterwinner at wide receiver for Sam Houston State from 1990-1991, Anderson was named Southland Conference all-academic as a senior. He also played for two years as a quarterback and receiver at Baylor from 1988-1989 before transferring. Anderson graduated with his bachelor’s degree in kinesiology from Sam Houston State in 1992. He also attained his master’s degree in sports administration from Eastern New Mexico in 1994.


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