Colorado State hires Nevada's Jay Norvell

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Colorado State has hired Nevada head coach Jay Norvell to lead the Rams, a person with knowledge of the decision said Monday.

The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the school was still finalizing an official announcement, but one was expected later Monday. Norvell will take over for Steve Addazio, who was fired Thursday.

Norvell guided the Wolf Pack to an 8-4 record this season and a spot in the Quick Lane Bowl against Western Michigan on Dec. 27.

An offensive innovator, Norvell has led his team to bowl games in four of the five seasons he’s been at Nevada. He’s 33-26 since being hired by the Wolf Pack on Dec. 9, 2016. That includes a 2-1 mark against fellow Mountain West member Colorado State. The Wolf Pack beat Colorado State 52-10 this season in a game where Addazio was ejected. It would prove to be his final contest with the Rams.

The hiring of Norvell didn’t take long after Addazio was fired. Addazio was let go after posting a 4-12 record over two seasons in Fort Collins.

Norvell found success at Nevada by putting a spin on a version of the “Air Raid” offense, which is usually designed out of a shotgun formation but his style incorporates some under-the-center schemes and features a physical ground game. His offensive coordinator at Nevada was Matt Mumme, whose father, Hal, helped popularize the “Air Raid” offense. The Wolf Pack were fourth in the nation in passing offense this season, averaging 365.8 yards per game.

The 58-year-old Norvell was a standout defensive back at Iowa before embarking on his coaching career. He’s had stops at Arizona State, Texas, Oklahoma, UCLA, Nebraska, Iowa State, Wisconsin, Northern Iowa and with the Hawkeyes. Norvell’s coaching path also included the NFL, where he was once the receivers coach for the Indianapolis Colts and then a tight ends coach with the Raiders.

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AP College Football Writer Ralph D. Russo contributed to this report.

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Colorado State hires Nevada's Jay Norvell
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