College teams can run their offenses in several ways. Some people set up a system and train a young person to take over running that system. Others allow their coordinators to set up and run the assistant’s system.
Some split the tasks between two or more co-coordinators. There’s only one right way to do it, and that’s how it works best for each person. Since a few years ago, college football offenses have been getting better at passing, and offenses are also better.
The best offensive coordinators can find players who fit their system. They change their system based on the players they already have. These coordinators get a lot of yards and, more importantly, many points.
In this article, we highlighted the top 15 best offensive coordinators in college football ever. You would also learn what they do and the steps to take to become one. Keep reading.
What Do The Best Offensive Coordinators In College Football Do?
There are some skills that most offensive coordinators need to have to do their jobs well.
By looking at resumes, we could figure out what skills most people in this position have in common.
We found that many resumes included skills like communication, dedication, and getting along with others.
How to Become one of the Best Offensive Coordinators in College Football?
One of the first things to consider if you want to be an offensive coordinator is how much schooling you need.
We have found that 70.7% of offensive coordinators have at least a bachelor’s degree. We found that 18.7% of offensive coordinators have master’s degrees. This is the highest level of education they have.
Even though most offensive coordinators have college degrees, you can become one with just a high school diploma or GED.
When looking into how to become an offensive coordinator, picking the right major is always an important step.
When we looked into the most common majors for offensive coordinators, we found that most of them get bachelor’s or master’s degrees. There are also associate degrees or high school diplomas.
You might be able to become an offensive coordinator if you have worked in other jobs. Many jobs as an offensive coordinator require experience as a coach or something similar.
At the same time, many offensive coordinators have also worked as head football coaches or head coaches in the past.
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What Is the Average Salary Of The Best Offensive Coordinators In College Football?
The average salary of the best offensive coordinators in college football is about $51,428 per year or $25 per hour.
The top 10 percent make more than $91,000 a year, while the bottom 10 percent make less than $28,000.
What are the College Football’s Most Creative Offensive Schemes?
#1. Army Don’t Toss ‘Em
Okay. So it’s not the most creative system in the world, and it hasn’t worked very well over the past few years.
However, you have to give the coaching staff at West Point credit. They have stuck with a system that hasn’t been popular since the 1920s.
Army is the team for you if you like the run. In 2012, the Black Knights had the worst passing offense in the FBS. They were 124th, which was dead last. The army completed 51 of 115 passes for 797 yards, three touchdowns, and two turnovers. For the whole year.
Army led the country in rushing. The cadets got 4,438 yards, and Army was the only team to get more than 320 yards on the ground per game (369.8).
Unfortunately, one-dimensional offenses typically lead to lop-sided losing records. Army’s 2-10 finish to 2012—which included its umpteenth consecutive loss to the Navy—only reinforces that point.
#2. Washington State Daylight Bombing
No matter how you feel about Mike Leach, you can’t deny that he is one of the most interesting people in college football today. During his time at Texas Tech, he was rough and sometimes strange.
So was his offensive game plan. It was to throw the ball early and often, no matter who was on the other team.
Leach’s Red Raiders were pretty good during his 10 years in Lubbock. They had a record of 84-43 and never missed a bowl game.
Their nickname was “Air Raid.” Now at Washington State, Leach is continuing his aerial attacks, only this time with limited success. Due to this, we call his attack at Wazzu “Daylight Bombing.”
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#3. Navy Flex Triple Option
Since Army is on our list, it makes sense to go south to Annapolis. The Navy Midshipmen, like their New York counterparts, aren’t as big or as athletic as the best football teams in the country.
Since every cadet and midshipman has to meet military fitness standards, the academies can’t accept a 320-pound lineman.
So how can the Navy compete so well with other FBS teams (8-5 in 2012)? It’s all about the plan for going on the attack. The Navy uses a system called “flexbone triple-option,” which used to be one of the best in football.
As players got bigger, stronger, and faster, the pro-style, run-and-gun, west coast, and spread, offenses replaced the flex. But that’s where the key to the Navy’s success lies.
The flex triple-option isn’t used very often these days, so most teams have a hard time stopping it. Navy’s opponents never know where the ball will go next. Mostly because the Midshipmen are so good at throwing them off.
The Navy is different from the Army because it has a passing attack that works. The Midshipmen won’t set any records for passing yards, but they can at least keep the defense on their toes.
#4. Nevada Pistol Option
Some people like the pistol, while others think it’s just a trick. Chris Ault made the current version of Nevada’s pistol. He used it to lead the Wolf Pack to eight straight bowl games. He did not coach the team in 1993 or from 1996 to 2003.
In the 1970s, Ault took over a Nevada program that was a small Division II team. He led the team during its time in the FCS (then Division I-AA) until 1992 when it joined the FBS.
In a pistol formation, the quarterback is halfway between a shotgun position and right in the middle. This is like a mini-gun, which is how the formation got its name.
Top 15 Best Offensive Coordinators In College Football
The best offensive coordinators in college football are-
#1. Philip Montgomery, Baylor
Baylor’s offense has been the best in college football for the past three years. Some say it’s tied with Oregon for the best offense.
Philip Montgomery is at the top of this list for so many reasons. Philip Montgomery is one of the best offensive coordinators in college football ever.
Most of the credit for Baylor’s turnaround goes to head coach Art Briles. This is well-deserved, but most people don’t realize that he doesn’t call the plays.
Montgomery is the one who turned it up when Baylor found a huge hole in the defense. He then turned it into an easy 70-yard touchdown.
#2. Chad Morris, Clemson
Chad Morris is the college football assistant coach with the highest salary. He has helped make Clemson one of only two teams in the ACC that are always good.
His offense wasn’t as good as some people thought it would be in 2013. However, it still ranked No. 19 on Football Outsiders’ offensive F/+ ratings.
In his first two years with the Tigers, they got ranked 21st and 7th. All of this adds up to an average of 12.3. Not a lot of teams can beat that. Morris is one of the best offensive coordinators in college football ever.
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#3. Rhett Lashlee, Auburn
Rhett Lashlee is one of the best offensive coordinators in college football ever. Lashlee has worked with Gus Malzahn for most of the last 13 years.
He played quarterback for Malzahn at Shiloh Christian when he was in high school. Later, when he was at Auburn for the first time under Gene Chizik, he worked as an assistant with Malzahn.
Lashlee went with Malzahn to Arkansas State. A year later, when the head coach came back to the Plains, Lashlee went with him again. During that time, Lashlee learned how to use Malzahn’s complicated offensive system. This would make him a popular candidate for coaching jobs in the future.
Rhett Lashlee knows this offense inside and out. He does well under pressure, so it’s no surprise he is one of the best offensive coordinators in college football.
He got coached and has been in high-pressure situations. Lashlee also knows how to stay calm and make good decisions, especially for a young person.
#4. Tom Herman, Ohio State
Tom Herman is a good example of meritocracy. He worked his way up from Division III to Ohio State. Tom did this by putting in his offense and doing well at every job he had as an assistant coach.
Before coming to Columbus to work with Urban Meyer in 2012, Herman helped Iowa State become a Big 12 team that always beat the big teams. In 2010, they beat Texas and won by 28 points.
They beat Texas Tech by 41 points in 2011. In the same season, they beat No. 2 Oklahoma State and won by 37 points in double overtime.
It is easy to see why Ohio State gave Herman the job. Since he joined the staff, he has done well in his job. Last season, Ohio State’s offense was the second best in the country.
Only Texas A&M did better, and it doesn’t look like many teams will do better in 2014. Tom Herman is one of the best offensive coordinators in college football ever.
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#5. Mike Bobo, Georgia
Mike Bobo is often blamed for Georgia’s inability to “get over the hump” in the SEC. This was due to reasons that are hard to understand. How come? Isn’t it his job to run the offense?
The same offense that got rated No. 4 in the country by Football Outsiders in 2012 and No. 8 in the country by Football Outsiders in 2013? The same offense that did the latter even though it caused a lot of injuries? That’s right.
In 2012, Bobo was a finalist for the Broyles Award. In 2013, he had another good season. He has been with the team for a long time and gets along well with head coach Mark Richt.
This should make ‘Dawgs fans feel good about the offense going into next season. Mike Bobo is one of the best offensive coordinators in college football ever.
#6. Cam Cameron, LSU
The most famous person on this list might be Cam Cameron. He has been a head coach and offensive coordinator in the NFL.
Even though his last job didn’t go so well (he got fired by the Baltimore Ravens, which helped them win the Super Bowl in 2012-13), he is a well-respected football expert who focuses on vertical passing. Cam Cameron is one of the best offensive coordinators in college football ever.
His first season at LSU could not have gone any better. It may be surprising to see him ranked this “low.” I agree that this might look silly if the Tigers do as well in 2014 as they did in 2013. But Cameron can’t get ranked any higher because he had so many talented players to choose from last year.
#7. Seth Littrell, North Carolina
Seth Littrell made Indiana’s offense one of the best in the country. That should be the end of the argument. He is one of the best offensive coordinators in college football ever. And if you think “powerhouse” is a strong word, which is understandable, take a closer look at the numbers.
Even though they lost their best offensive player (running back Tevin Coleman) for the last three games of last season, the Hoosiers finished No. 16 on Football Outsiders’ offensive F/+ ratings. They finished ahead of teams like Missouri, Clemson, Louisville, Oklahoma, and Wisconsin.
Littrell did a good job running the offense for Mike Stoops at Arizona. This was before he joined Kevin Wilson in Bloomington. He used his success at IU to get a job as an offensive coordinator in North Carolina. There, he and Larry Fedora should run one of the best offenses in the country.
#8. Scott Frost, Oregon
Last season, Oregon’s offense got worse as the year went on. However, for a while, the Ducks didn’t miss a beat. Even though they lost offensive genius and former head coach Chip Kelly to the NFL. Scott Frost is one of the best offensive coordinators in college football ever.
A lot of the credit for this success should go to the team’s offensive coordinator, Scott Frost. He got moved up from being the receivers coach after Mark Helfrich got hired to replace Chip Kelly. Dennis Dodd says Frost beat Washington so badly in the second half of last year’s game.
He gets what he wants. Everyone knows that Frost also dated the hottest cheerleader and drove the hottest car in high school. We know that when he was the quarterback for Nebraska in the 1990s, he led a very good offense. Before he turns 40, he started coaching. Frost has worked his way up the coaching ladder and is now in his fifth year with Oregon.
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#9. Josh Heupel, Oklahoma
2013 was not Josh Heupel’s best year. Oklahoma struggled until the end of the season to find a new quarterback to replace Landry Jones. At times, the results were not pretty.
But when a team replaces a four-year starter at the center, they often have trouble like that. Heupel did a pretty good job, all things considered. Also, a year is just a year. Heupel’s record before last season was good enough for him to be in the top 10 no matter what.
The Sooners’ offense is always in the top 20 in the country. Not many coordinators can make Alabama lose 45 points. This is why he is one of the best offensive coordinators in college football ever.
#10. Jake Spavital, Texas A&M
Jake Spavital is calling the plays for Texas A&M before he turns 30. This is crazy when you think about how far the Aggies have come as a team in the last two seasons. And a big part of Johnny Manziel’s improvement as a passer in 2013 can be due to Spavital’s knowledge.
Before coming to College Station, Spavital worked as Dana Holgorsen’s quarterback’s coach for two years at West Virginia.
He also worked as Mike Gundy’s graduate assistant at Oklahoma State for one year. Spavital also put in another year as Kevin Sumlin’s graduate assistant at Houston.
Sumlin is now the head coach at A&M and one of the best offensive coordinators in college football ever. Since 2009, every quarterback Spavital has worked with has started an NFL game.
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#11. Alabama’s Lane Kiffin and Florida’s Garrick McGee, Louisville
Lane Kiffin and Garrick McGee are back as coordinators after failing as head coaches for the most part.
When Kiffin left the Oakland Raiders, Tennessee, and USC, he left sewage in his wake. On the other hand, McGee was never able to get a good start at UAB.
However, in a past life, each of them was a successful offensive coordinator. Kiffin was the coach of two of the best USC teams under Pete Carroll. McGee was a finalist for the Broyles Award at Arkansas under Bobby Petrino in 2011.
Now, McGee is back with Petrino at Louisville, and Nick Saban is in charge at Alabama. Both coordinators have good players on their teams and the right coach to help them do well again. They are one of the best offensive coordinators in college football ever.
#12. Tim Beck, Nebraska
Last season, Nebraska’s offense took a big step back. According to Football Outsiders’ offensive F/+ ratings, Nebraska’s offense went from being No. 8 to No. 61. However, he doesn’t fall off completely because he couldn’t control a lot of what happened last season.
Taylor Martinez had to take over as quarterback because he got hurt. Neither Ron Kellogg nor Tommy Armstrong was ready to lead the team.
Beck knew this, so he gave the ball to Ameer Abdullah, who was the best-returning rusher in the country, by force. He is one of the best offensive coordinators in college football ever.
#13. Mike Norvell, Arizona State
Mike Norvell is one of the most talked-about young college football coaches. If Arizona State has another season like the one they had in 2013, he may not be a coordinator for long.
The names he has worked under are a big part of that. Norvell worked with Auburn head coach Gus Malzahn and Clemson offensive coordinator Chad Morris when he was the passing game coordinator at Tulsa. Graham had been his mentor for a long time.
It has been hard to ignore the results of that guidance. According to Football Outsiders’ offensive F/+ ratings, ASU’s offense was the 11th best in the country last year.
With Taylor Kelly and Jaelen Strong back, it could be just as good in 2014. Mike Norvell is one of the best offensive coordinators in college football.
#14. Kurt Roper, Florida
Kurt Roper was a finalist for the Broyles Award in 2013 after leading Duke to the ACC Championship Game. He used that season to get one of the best jobs in the country as Florida’s offensive coordinator. He is one of the best offensive coordinators in college football ever.
Even though Florida has a lot more talent, Duke was No. 33 in offensive efficiency last season. Florida was No. 99, according to Football Outsiders’ offensive F/+ ratings.
Roper has the chance to lead a huge turnaround in Gainesville. He has former stars like quarterback Jeff Driskel and running back Kelvin Taylor on his team.
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#15. Doug Nussmeier, Michigan
Doug Nussmeier has a reputation that “anyone could win at Alabama,” which is a little bit unfair and a little bit fair. Under Nick Saban, he got to coach a team with a lot of great players. He still ranks very high as one of the best offensive coordinators in college football ever.
Michigan is a good place for Nussmeier to land as far as drop-offs go. He won’t be coaching people who are only good enough for the MAC.
Instead, he will be coaching some of the best prospects in the country. Just like the last two seasons, he won’t be coaching only the best prospects in the country.
All of this means that there is a reason why he isn’t in the top 10 on this list. He needs to get back on his feet outside of Alabama. Especially since his offensive play-calling during the last season left a bit too much out.
Nussmeier could jump into the top five by next season if he can get Michigan’s offense moving again.
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Frequently Asked Questions
In football, the offensive coordinator is the coach in charge of the offense. Offense coordinators are to lead the offense during practices. They come up with plays and strategies and call offensive plays during games.
Around $1 million is the average salary for an NFL coordinator. There are a lot of differences depending on the coordinator’s experience, the team’s success, and the overall value and resources of a franchise. In 2002, Marvin Lewis was the first coach to make more than $1 million a year.
They think that these coordinators see this as a way to boost their status and get more attention. This will increase their chances of becoming head coaches. Other general managers say it doesn’t matter where their play caller is as long as the offense is working.
You might be able to become an offensive coordinator if you have worked in other jobs. A lot of jobs as an offensive coordinator require experience as a coach or something similar. At the same time, many offensive coordinators have also worked as head football coaches or head coaches in the past.
On average, waterboys in the NFL make $53,000 a year (according to Stack.com). But that is just the starting salary. For pros, their pay can be as high as that of the highest-paid NFL waterboy. That means it depends quite a bit on your entry level.
The offensive coordinator is in charge of the team’s offensive game plan and usually calls offensive plays during the game. Some offensive-minded head coaches also call plays.
The speed at which they usually ran the offense is so crucial to its success. Several things are done during the game to keep the fast pace.
This is the primary duty of the best offensive coordinators in college football. Most of the time, the head coach has the final say on what play to run.
However, sometimes the coordinators run the plays instead of the head coach.
- saturdaydownsouth.com– Best offensive coordinators in college football
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