Hawaii makes Chow’s hiring official

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Following up on multiple reports from Tuesday, Hawaii has officially announced that Norm Chow has been hired as the Warriors’ new head coach.

The 65-year-old Chow, who has never been a head coach during his 39-year coaching career, will replace Greg McMackin, who “retired” earlier this month after four years at the school.

“I am happy and proud to welcome Norm Chow as our new football coach,” athletic director Jim Donovan said in a statement. “I’d like to thank the search committee for their work the last two weeks. I’d also like to thank Glenn Sugiyama and DHR International for their support. Obviously Norm is one of the best offensive minds in the country and we are thrilled that he’s able to come home to lead our football program. This is special not only for the university but for him. His wide-open offense and name recognition will only help us in recruiting the top talent to our university and football program.”

“I am extremely honored to receive the privilege of leading the University of Hawai’i football program; it is very humbling,” Chow said. “This is a program with great history, and I feel excited and energized about creating a program that will make all of the people of Hawai’i feel pride for the university and our state. I am looking forward to coming home, to family and friends, and I am going to do my best to contribute to the rich history of Hawai’i and its progress. I want to thank President Greenwood, the Board of Regents and Athletics Director Jim Donovan for giving me this opportunity, and I am looking forward to meeting the student body at the University of Hawai’i and getting them excited about Hawai’i Football.”

Chow spent the first 27 years of his coaching career (1973-1999) at BYU before moving on to offensive coordinator jobs at North Carolina State (2000), USC (2001-04) and UCLA (2008-10) at the collegiate level and with the Tennessee Titans (2005-07) at the NFL level.  He served as the coordinator at Utah, his alma mater, this past season.

As noted by Ben, Chow’s first game as a head coach will carry a little additional spice thanks to the opponent; the Warriors open the 2012 season at USC and against Lane Kiffin, who replaced Chow as the Trojans’ coordinator following the 2004 season.

With Hawaii filling their vacancy with Chow, there are currently four Div. 1-A (FBS) head-coaching openings — Akron, Houston, Penn State and Pittsburgh.  And how did we know that?  By clicking HERE for the coaching carousel, of course.

Memphis lands Arizona State grad transfer QB Brady White

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Brady White came to Arizona State as the highest-rated quarterback signee in the program’s history.  Three years later, he’ll write the final chapter of his collegiate playing career a lot further east.

In an announcement posted to his Twitter account Tuesday night, White revealed that, “[a]fter weeks of prayer, reflection, and discussion with my family,” he has decided to transfer from ASU to Memphis.  White heads to the Tigers as a graduate, which give him immediate eligibility in 2018.

Not only that, but White will be eligible to play in 2019 as well.  The Memphis Commercial Appeal is also reporting that White could have another season beyond that via a medical hardship waiver.

A four-star member of the Sun Devils’ 2015 recruiting class, White was the No. 4 pro-style quarterback in the country; the No. 10 player at any position in the state of California; and rated as the No. 68 player overall on 247Sports.com‘s composite board.  And ASU’s offensive coordinator when he signed? Mike Norvell, who is now the head coach at Memphis.

After redshirting as a true freshman, White appeared in three games in 2016, completing 25-of-49 passes for 259 yards, two touchdowns and an interception.  He started one of those games, in early October against UCLA.  A foot injury not only ended that season prematurely, but kept him out for the 2017 season as well; that’s the missed season that will likely get White a sixth year of eligibility in 2020.

Reports: Maryland OC Walt Bell to take same job at Florida State

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Willie Taggart has found himself someone to (help) guide his first offense at Florida State.

While there’s nothing official yet from the football program, 247Sports.com was among the first to report that Maryland’s Walt Bell is set to be named as FSU’s offensive coordinator. Bell is also expected to serve as FSU’s quarterbacks coach.

ESPN.com subsequently confirmed the initial reports.

The 33-year-old Bell spent the past two seasons as the coordinator at Maryland.  Prior to that, he held the same job, along with quarterbacks coach responsibility, at Arkansas State from 2014-15.

While Bell called plays during his stint with the Terrapins, it’s expected Taggart will have play-calling responsibilities with the Seminoles.

Wazzu statement: ‘The tragic news today surrounding Tyler Hilinksi is devastating to all’

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Tuesday night, the Pullman Police Department confirmed that 21-year-old Washington State quarterback Tyler Hilinski was found dead in his apartment of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head.  Very early Wednesday morning, the football program and athletic department released statements addressing the devastating developments.

HEAD FOOTBALL COACH MIKE LEACH
We are deeply saddened to hear the news of Tyler’s passing. He was an incredible young man and everyone who had the privilege of knowing him was better for it. The entire WSU community mourns as thoughts and prayers go out to his family.

INTERIM ATHLETIC DIRECTOR John Johnson
The tragic news today surrounding Tyler Hilinski is devastating to all. Tyler was a tremendous individual, great friend and teammate, and he will be deeply missed. Our hearts go out to his family and friends.

Earlier tonight, the football team was brought together and informed of the tragedy. There, they were met by campus and department counseling and psychological services, including athletics’ on-staff clinical psychologist and a licensed mental health counselor, along with WSU Athletics medical team. The university will continue to coordinate and provide ongoing counseling care for all student-athletes as long as needed.

Washington State QB Tyler Hilinski found dead in apparent suicide

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There is utterly tragic and horrific news coming out of Pullman Tuesday night.

According to the Pullman Police Department, Washington State quarterback Tyler Hilinski was found dead at his apartment late Tuesday afternoon of what was described as an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head. “A rifle was discovered next to Hilinski and a suicide note was found,” the police stated in a release.

Police officers were called to the residence at 7:30 p.m. ET (4:40 p.m. local time) for a wellness check after the redshirt sophomore failed to show up for a team activity earlier in the day.

Hilinski was just 21 years old.

As of this posting, there’s been no official response from the football program regarding the passing of Hilinski.  Wednesday, the university had been expected to announce the new athletic director replacing Bill Moos, Florida Atlantic’s Pat Chun; because of the football player’s death, that press conference will be rescheduled for a later date.

In place of Luke Falk, Hilinski started Wazzu’s Holiday Bowl loss to Michigan State.  With Falk off to the NFL, Hilinski was expected to be the Cougars’ starting quarterback in 2018.

Our thoughts, prayers and condolences go out to all of those impacted by Hilinski’s way-too-early passing.