LOGAN, Utah – Utah State football coach Gary Andersen announced Tuesday that he has hired former Utah State player Matt Wells to be the Aggies’ quarterbacks coach.”My family and I are extremely excited to return to Logan and Cache Valley and be a part of Coach Andersen’s staff,” Wells said. “The opportunity to return and coach quarterbacks at my alma mater has been a dream of mine for some time now.” A three-year letterman at Utah State, Wells played quarterback for four years (1993-96) and was the starter as a sophomore. A three-time all-Big West academic selection, Wells was a member of Big West Conference championship teams in 1993 and 1996. He was also a part of the 1993 Las Vegas Bowl team, helping the Aggies to a 42-33 win over Ball State.Wells, who is 37 and a native of Sallisaw, Okla., received his bachelor’s degree in business marketing from Utah State in 1996. He has also taken courses at the Huntsman School of Business in pursuit of his MBA.Wells returns to Utah State after coaching at New Mexico, where he coached the wide receivers and kick off return unit last season. In 2009, Wells was the quarterbacks coach and passing game coordinator at Louisville. In 2007 and 2008, Wells was New Mexico’s wide receivers coach and recruiting coordinator, coaching alongside current USU offensive coordinator Dave Baldwin and current Aggie offensive line coach T.J. Woods with the Lobos.”I look forward to reuniting with Coach Baldwin and Coach Woods in taking our offense to another level and competing for conference championships and bowl games in the very near future,” Wells said.Wells has coached nine all-conference players, two All-Americans and two NFL Draft picks in the last eight years. Under Wells’ tutelage, his kick off return units have broken or tied 16 school records as well as breaking or tying four NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) records.”This was a very important hire for our program with a new quarterback coming in and taking snaps for us next year. Matt is a very, very good coach and has a highly decorated track record,” Andersen said. “He brings experience to the table and has spent time in the past with Coach Baldwin and Coach Woods, so transition from an offensive standpoint should be very clean. He also will be highly involved in the development of our recruiting program, not just by having an area, but also as one of our recruiting coordinators. We are extremely excited to have him and his family join us.”Like Wells, Andersen returned to his alma mater to coach, as Andersen coached at his alma mater of Utah for 11 seasons.”He is a former Aggie and that is important for our program. I had the opportunity as a coach to coach at my alma mater, and it was special experience for me, and I believe it will be a very special experience for Matt,” Andersen said. Last season at New Mexico, in addition to coaching the Lobo wide receivers, Wells coordinated a kick off return unit that finished 27th in the FBS with a 23.5 yards per return average. The kickoff return unit established six new school records, while tying one.In his one season at Louisville, Wells directed a passing game that amassed 2,507 yards and nine TD’s. The Cardinals averaged 208.9 yards passing per game and was led by QB Adam Froman, who connected on 111-of-185 passing with six TD’s. Froman had at least one TD toss in each of the last six games of the season.In his first coaching stint at New Mexico, Wells coached the Lobo wide receivers, including a pair of first team all-Mountain West Conference receivers in Travis Brown and Marcus Smith in 2007. Smith led the MWC in receiving, setting a school record with 91 receptions for 1,125 yards and 4 TD’s, while Brown tallied 76 catches for 1,031 yards with six TD’s. It was the first time in New Mexico history that two different receivers had 1,000 receiving yards in the same season. Smith was a fourth-round draft pick of the Baltimore Ravens in 2008.Prior to New Mexico, Wells was tight ends coach and recruiting coordinator at Tulsa from 2002-06. Wells was a part of three bowl trips for the Golden Hurricane in four seasons from 2003-06, including helping Tulsa to its first back-to-back bowls since 1964-65 by making repeat bowl trips in 2005 and 2006.In 2005, Wells mentored Tulsa tight end Garrett Mills, who established an NCAA single-season record for receiving yards by a tight end with 1,235 yards. Mills ended his Tulsa career ranked as the top receiving tight end in school history with 2,389 career yards, which also placed him sixth on the school’s all-time receiving list.Wells also coached Caleb Blankenship at Tulsa, an honorable mention all-conference selection in 2003 and 2004.Under Wells’ guidance, Tulsa’s tight ends caught the most passes in the nation in 2003 with 89 receptions for 855 yards and 12 TD’s, as well as combining for 83 receptions and 919 yards in 2004.Before his stint at Tulsa, Wells was an assistant coach at the U.S. Naval Academy from 1997-2001, serving as a service academy assistant coach for the varsity in 1997, assisting with coaching the quarterbacks and fullbacks. Wells also mentored the varsity fullbacks for three seasons (1998-2000) and the wide receivers in 2001.During the 1998-2000 seasons, Wells also served as the head junior varsity coach and offensive coordinator. The Navy J.V. teams posted an overall record of 20-2 during that span.Wells and his wife, Jen, have two daughters, Jadyn and Ella, and a son, Wyatt.Utah State concluded the 2010 season with a 4-8 overall record and 2-6 WAC mark. Fans can follow the Aggie football program at twitter.com/USUFootball or on the USU football blog at twitter.com/USUAthletics or on facebook at Utah State University Athletics.-USU-
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