UPDATE: Steve Sarkisian introduced Bob Connelly as USC's next offensive line coach Wednesday night at the Trojans recruiting dinner. No official public announcement has been made.
Oklahoma State offensive line coach Bob Connelly will assume the same position at USC after National Signing Day according to multiple sources within and outside the Trojans program. It's understood that Connelly has gone through all the vetting steps required for the job, but an official announcement is not expected until after next week's NLI Day.
Connelly, an 18-year coaching veteran and former associate head coach at both Arizona State and UTEP, has also coached at Washington State, Alabama, UCLA, will come in with a familiarity with a no-huddle, uptempo offensive system. He will replace Tim Drevno, who left USC after a year to return to coach with Jim Harbaugh at Michigan.
Connelly is familiar with the West Coast as a recruiter and from his three Pac-12 stints as well as time at San Jose State and Cal State Northridge. Connelly has coached 10 bowl teams including the Washington State team that played in the 2002 Rose Bowl and the 2005 Alabama team in the Cotton Bowl. He coached at UCLA in 2007.
He's coached nine NFL players including most prominently, the 2008 Outland Trophy winner, Andre Smith of Alabama, who is with the Bengals.
A native of Carrollton, Tex., Connelly was an NCAA Division II All-American guard at Texas A&M-Commerce, where he was a two-time Academic All-American and the school's male athlete of the year.
With 10 coaching stops in the last 18 years, Connelly is that classic college assistant coach. In fact, last February he had two stops in a week, as he told The Oklahoman newspaper in Oklahoma City. He'd just made the 2,000-mile drive from Phoenix to Statesboro, Ga., where he was set to take the Georgia Southern O-line job after a year coaching high school football in Phoenix when he got a call from Oklahoma State coach Mike Gundy.
Coming back to OSU and the Big 12 was a no-brainer. Here's how Connelly described his approach to The Oklahoman: “I think, through time, they're going to develop the respect and the appreciation for the knowledge that I can provide them through fundamentals and technique, as well as through scheme, to put the players in the best position to be successful on the field on Saturdays and off the field in society.”
Much of Connelly's coaching career has been tied up with a name USC fans will remember quite well -- Washington State's Mike Price. In Connelly's two years in Pullman, 2001 and 2002, the Cougs went 20-5 and beat USC in overtime in 2002 with WSU in the Top 25 in scoring offense, passing offense and total offense both seasons.
Connelly went with Price to Alabama and after Price was fired for the drunken strip-club episode in the summer, he stayed on Mike Shula's staff for four seasons when the Tide went from 4-9 to 10-2. He then rejoined Price at UTEP for four seasons as co-offensive coordinator and associate head coach after a year at UCLA in 2007.
Connelly told The Oklahoman, that Price was “very, very instrumental in my growth professionally . . . He's provided avenues and opportunities for me to grow under him . . . He's like a father to me. Just a great, great, great friend, great man, great football coach.”
In 2012, Connelly was associate head coach and offensive line coach in Todd Graham's first season in Tempe for a team that USC beat 38-17 in the Coliseum.
This year's young Oklahoma State team finished 7-6 after a 30-22 win over Washington in the Cactus Bowl.
Here's a video link to Connelly's last year's Oklahoma State media day interview.
From the Oklahoma State media guide, here is some Connelly biographical information:*** A native of Carrollton, Texas, who graduated from Texas A&M Commerce in 1994 with a degree in kinesiology and then a master's degree in health, physical education and recreation, Connelly was an All-America offensive guard as well as a two-time member of the Academic All-America team during his playing days. He was singled out as his school's male athlete of the year.
*** Peronal: Connelly and his wife, Racquel, have two daughters, Taylor and Paige.
Connelly Year by Year: 1995: Texas A&M Commerce - Offensive Line and Tight Ends; 1996-97: Cisco Junior College - Offensive Line and Tight Ends; 1998: Texas A&M - Graduate Assistant; 1999: Cal State Northridge - Offensive Line and Tight Ends: 2000: San Jose State - Offensive Line; 2001-02: Washington State - Offensive Line; 2003-06: Alabama - Offensive Line; 2007: UCLA - Offensive Line; 2008-11: UTEP - Offensive Line, Associate Head Coach, Co-Offensive Coordinator; 2012: Arizona State - Associate Head Coach, Offensive Line; 2014: Oklahoma State - Offensive Line Coach.
Bowl Games: 1998 Sugar Bowl, 2001 Sun Bowl, 2002 Rose Bowl, 2004 Music City Bowl, 2005 Cotton Bowl, 2006 Independence Bowl, 2007 Las Vegas Bowl, 2010 New Mexico Bowl, 2012 Fight Hunger Bowl, 2015 Cactus Bowl.
Prominent Pupils: Andre Smith, Cincinnati Bengals and 2008 Outland Trophy winner; Wesley Britt, New England Patriots; Justin Smiley, San Francisco 49ers; Evan Mathis, Philadelphia Eagles and NFL Pro Bowl selection; Antoine Caldwell, Houston Texans; Rex Tucker, Chicago Bears; Cameron Spikes, Arizona Cardinals; Seth McKinney, Miami Dolphins; Billy Yates, New England Patriots.You can follow me on Twitter at @dweber3440 or email me at email@example.com.