Sun Devil Football Hires Klayton Adams as Offensive Line Coach
TEMPE, Ariz. – Head Coach Herm Edwards announced the addition of 16-year veteran NFL and collegiate coach Klayton Adams to the Sun Devil Football coaching staff.
Adams will serve as the Offensive Line Coach and Run Game Coordinator, replacing Dave Christensen, who retired following the 2020 season. He joins Arizona State after a two-year stint as the Assistant Offensive Line Coach with the Indianapolis Colts, his first full-time coaching position in the professional ranks. Prior to that, Adams enjoyed a successful tenure at Colorado, coaching in Boulder from 2013-2018.
"I cannot wait to start working for Coach Edwards at Arizona State," Adams exclaimed. "It's a huge dream come true to work for him and this school. You have to work for someone that you believe in as a leader. And Zak Hill and I have a relationship that goes way back. I know what he wants to do with the offense so it will be perfect. They've done a tremendous job recruiting and I am excited to start working with this offensive line group. Overall, this coaching staff is amazing and I can't wait to be around then and improve myself as a coach."
During his time with the Colts working under 32-year coaching veteran Chris Strausser, Adams helped develop one of the NFL's top offensive lines. This past season, the Colts finished 11th in the NFL in rushing yards (124.8 yards/game) thanks to an offensive line that was graded as the seventh-best in the league according to PFF. In both of Adams' seasons in Indianapolis, two Colts' offensive lineman made the Pro Bowl, with center Ryan Kelly and guard Quenton Nelson accomplishing the feat. Rookie running back Jonathon Taylor finished third in the NFL in rushing yards this season (1,169), marking the highest total by a Colts running back in a single season since Edgerrin James in 2005 (1,506)
In Adams' first season in Indianapolis, the Colts were the only team in the NFL to start the same five offensive linemen (tackle Anthony Castonzo, guard Quenton Nelson, center Ryan Kelly, guard Mark Glowinski and tackle Braden Smith) in all 16 regular season games. The group tied for the ninth-fewest sacks allowed in the league. Nelson and Kelly were each named to the Pro Bowl, marking the first time Indianapolis had two offensive linemen represented in the Pro Bowl since 2006. Nelson also garnered Associated Press First Team All-Pro honors for the second consecutive season.
In 2019, the Colts registered a top-10 rushing attack for the first time since 2001 as the team boasted the league's seventh-ranked rushing offense (133.1 yards per game). Indianapolis' 4.52 yards per carry average was the fifth-highest single-season total in franchise history. Running back Marlon Mack finished 11th in the NFL in rushing yards with a single-season career-high 1,091 yards on the ground to become the first Colts player to register a 1,000-yard rushing season since 2016. In Week 11 vs. Jacksonville (11/17), the offensive line helped pave the way for Jonathan Williams (116 yards) and Mack (109 yards) to become just the fourth pair of running backs in franchise history to register 100 rushing yards in the same game.
"Klayton Adams has a unique blend of college football and NFL coaching experience to go along with a tremendous personality," Coach Edwards mentioned. "His skill set fits perfectly within our Pro Model. He brings a great knowledge of the run game to our offensive staff. Our young offensive linemen will greatly benefit from his knowledge and experience."
Prior to Indianapolis, Adams spent six seasons at Colorado, where he served as co-offensive coordinator/offensive line coach (2018) and offensive line coach (2016-17) after serving three seasons (2013-15) coaching the running backs and tight ends.
During his stint as the Offensive Line Coach, Adams' unit paved the way for running back Phillip Lindsay to become the first Colorado player in school history to register 1,000 rushing yards in back-to-back seasons (1,474 yards in 2017 and 1,189 yards in 2016). In 2016, the Buffaloes compiled their highest average per rush (4.12) in 10 seasons while Lindsay became the school's first 1,000-yard rusher in seven years. In 2015, six different players rushed for at least 200 yards for just the fourth time in school history. Colorado had four different players rush for over 300 yards in 2014 for the first time in school history.
Prior to Colorado, Adams served as the tight ends coach at San Jose State for two seasons (2011-12). He coached two-time John Mackey Award watch list member Ryan Otten to Honorable Mention All-America recognition.
Adams coached two seasons at Sacramento State, where he served as the offensive tackles/tight ends coach (2009) before being promoted to offensive line coach (2010). He coached three players to All-Big Sky Conference honors while at Sacramento State. Adams served as run game coordinator/offensive line coach at Western Washington for two seasons (2007-08).
In 2006, Adams served as offensive graduate assistant at his alma mater, Boise State. The 2006 Broncos went 13-0 and defeated Oklahoma in a 43-42 overtime victory in the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl in Glendale. Boise State ended the 2006 season ranked No. 5 in the Associated Press poll, No. 6 in the Coaches poll and No. 8 in the final BCS rankings. Adams began his coaching career in 2005 as a student assistant for the Broncos.
Adams graduated from Boise State with a bachelor's degree in mass communication with an emphasis in journalism. He lettered twice at center on the Broncos' 2003 and 2004 Western Athletic Conference championship teams that had a combined 24-2 record and won the 2003 Fort Worth Bowl and played in the 2004 Liberty Bowl. The Broncos finished 13-1 his junior year and were ranked No. 15 in the Coaches poll and No. 16 in the final Associated Press poll. Adams was 11-1 his senior year as the team finished No. 10 in the final BCS rankings, No. 12 by the Associated Press and No. 13 in the Coaches poll. He was named a Second Team All-WAC selection his senior season.
Adams was born in Sacramento and graduated from Sheldon High School (Elk Grove, Calif.), where he lettered in football, wrestling and track and field. Adams will be joined in Tempe by his wife, Stefani, and their three daughters, Mya, Emmy and Harper.