Story written by OSU Media Relations
STILLWATER – A two-time selection as one of the top 25 recruiters in the nation, Josh Henson is returning to his alma mater to coach the Oklahoma State offensive line, it was announced today.
A four-year letterman at Oklahoma State from 1994-97, Henson has 18 years of coaching experience to his credit, including serving as offensive coordinator at Missouri under Gary Pinkel and serving as recruiting coordinator and tight ends coach under Les Miles at Oklahoma State and again at LSU. Included on his career resume are the 2008 national title at LSU, a pair of LSU recruiting classes that were ranked in the top 10 nationally and back-to-back SEC East titles from his time at Missouri.
After returning to Stillwater in the role of offensive analyst under Mike Gundy in 2016, he accepted a job as assistant head coach/offensive line and run game coordinator at Arizona State in January of 2017 before coming back to OSU in his current role.
“Josh is highly intelligent and he knows the things that need to happen for us to be successful at Oklahoma State,” said head coach Mike Gundy. “We know him well and we’re excited about what he brings to our team.”
As a player, Henson was a standout offensive lineman for the Cowboys who logged 37 starts over his four-year career. As a senior in 1997, he was a second-team All-Big 12 performer and was a leader for a Cowboy squad that went 8-4 and finished second in the Big 12 South.
“Oklahoma State is my alma mater and will always have a special place in my heart. The opportunity to come back and be part of Cowboy football is special to me,” Henson said. “I want to thank Coach Gundy for giving me the opportunity to come back. I want to thank Coach Graham for the opportunity to coach at Arizona State, though it was for a short time. What excites me about returning to Stillwater is the opportunity to take OSU to the next level. When you win 10 games, winning those extra couple games is a real challenge, and I’m excited to have that opportunity.”
After graduating in 1998 with a degree in secondary education, Henson went straight into coaching, serving as a high school football coach in Kingfisher. In one season at Kingfisher, he helped guide the Yellowjackets to the Oklahoma state semifinals.
He returned to OSU as a grad assistant in 1999 and was elevated to tight ends coach and recruiting coordinator in 2001. As recruiting coordinator, Henson played a key role in OSU’s 2003 signing class being ranked No. 15 in the nation by Rivals.com. A year earlier, Rivals.com rated the Cowboy class as the 26th-best in the country.
When Les Miles left Oklahoma State for LSU, he took Henson with him to Baton Rouge and Henson again served as tight ends coach and recruiting coordinator. As LSU’s recruiting coordinator, Henson assembled a pair of top-10 recruiting classes in 2006 and 2007 that helped the Tigers win the BCS National Championship in 2008. For his efforts, Henson was ranked as one of college football’s top 25 recruiters in 2006 and 2007 by Rivals.com.
Henson moved on to Missouri in 2009 and during his time at Mizzou, he coached the Tiger offensive line before being elevated to offensive coordinator in 2013. As offensive coordinator, he helped the Tigers to a trip to the Cotton Bowl at the end of the 2013 season and an appearance in the Citrus Bowl at the end of the 2014 season. From 2013-15, four of Henson’s offensive linemen from Missouri were drafted into the NFL.
Henson had five offensive linemen from his time at Missouri on active NFL rosters during 2016-17 season.
In Henson’s first year as offensive coordinator, Missouri ranked 13th nationally in scoring (after ranking 80th in 2012) at 39.1 points per game, 16th in total offense (96th in 2012) at just under 500 yards per game, 16th in rushing (88th in 2012) and 34th in passing efficiency, a year after ranking just 103rd nationally in that category
A native of Tuttle, Okla., Henson and his wife Shauna have a son, Will, and a daughter, Kate.