Cougars Hire New Offensive Line Coach

Feb. 13, 2001

PULLMAN, Wash. -- - Bob Connelly, whose San Jose Spartan offensive line only allowed 11 sacks in 12 games last season, has been hired as Washington State University's new offensive line coach, Cougar head coach Mike Price announced Monday.

'Bob Connelly is one of the outstanding young offensive line coaches in America and I feel very fortunate re have been able to hire him,' Price said. 'I believe he is an excellent fit for our staff and I have no doubt our players will respond to his coaching with enthusiasm.'

Connelly, who prepped at Newman-Smith High in Carrolton, Texas, is a 1994 graduate of Texas A&M-Commerce, then known as East Texas State University. He earned a bachelor's degree in kinesiology and sports studies, then returned to receive his master's in health, physical education and recreation while serving as a graduate assistant for the Lions in 1995 and then again in 1998.

The new Cougar coach began his coaching career at Cisco Junior College in 1996, then returned to his alma mater in 1998. In 1999 he was the offensive line and tight end coach at California State-Northridge.

Last fall Connelly joined Dave Baldwin's staff at San Jose State. Running behind one of the school's best offensive lines ever, tailback Deonce Whitaker finished the season ranked fourth in the nation in rushing, while tackle Chris Fe'esago became the school's first official Outland Trophy candidate. The Spartans rushed for 29 touchdowns, the second best total in SJSU history.

As a collegiate player, Connelly earned academic all-conference honors three times and was an All-Lone Star Conference offensive lineman twice. During his senior year he also earned All-West Region and All-America honors as a guard and was named the school's male athlete of the year.

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