Mountaineer fans, meet WVU Football’s new offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach, Graham Harrell.
Prior to WVU, the Texas Tech grad spent time with Washington State as an offensive analyst and outside receivers coach before logging three seasons at the University of North Texas as the OC and quarterbacks coach, where he produced back-to-back top-25 offenses. When he was hired by the University of Southern California in 2019, he held the same position for three seasons in Los Angeles.
“I have followed Graham’s playing and coaching career for quite some time, and there’s no question he is a talented coach with a bright future,” WVU head coach Neal Brown said. “He has a successful track record as a play caller, has done an outstanding job of developing quarterbacks, and is a proven winner. His character, competitiveness, and positive energy is a great fit for our program. He brings Power 5 coaching experience and an extensive knowledge of the Big 12. I know he is looking forward to getting started, meeting our staff and players.”
Die-hard WVU Football fans may recognize Harrell’s name. He was in the running for Holgorsen-era OC Jake Spavital’s job when he left for Texas State in 2018.
“This program has a long and successful history with a lot of tradition, and I have so much respect for the state of West Virginia, its people and their values,” Harrell said. “I believe this is a great fit for me and my family as Neal and I know or have worked with a lot of the same people. I grew up in the Big 12, played in it, and I look forward to getting back to competing in it. I can’t wait to get to know our players and help this program make its mark.”
Harrell was a record-setting quarterback for head coach Mike Leach at Texas Tech from 2005-08, finishing his career with an NCAA-record 134 touchdown passes, the second-most career yards in NCAA history (15,793), and the third-highest career passing average (351.0). In each of his three seasons as a starter, his passing yardage figures placed in the top-25 all-time at the FBS level (No. 21 in 2006 with 4,555 yards, No. 2 in 2007 with 5,705, and No. 6 in 2008 with 5,111), and he was the first player with a pair of 5,000-yard passing seasons.
In 2008, he was an All-American first teamer, finished fourth in the Heisman Trophy voting, won the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award, was a finalist for the Walter Camp and Davey O’Brien Awards and was a National Football Foundation Scholar-Athlete. His 5,111 passing yards led the nation and he threw 45 touchdowns with only nine interceptions.
As for Gerad Parker’s status, Brown plans to transition he and running backs coach Chad Scott into the co-offensive coordinator and “the run game coordinator and running backs coach”, respectively.
Welcome to #AlmostHeaven, Graham Harrell!
— West Virginia Football (@WVUfootball) January 10, 2022