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Hawai'i Hires Utah Offensive Coordinator Norm Chow To Be Next Head Coach

It was looking like the head coaching job for Hawai'i was going to be Jacksonville Jaguar offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter, but the Hawai'i Star-Advertiser is reporting that Utah Utes offensive coordinator will be named the next Hawai'i head coach.


This is an odd hire in my opinion because this will be Chow's first head coaching job ever and he is not young as he is 65. Chow made his name as he coached the quarterbacks and was the offensive coordinator for BYU where he coached great college quarterbacks such such as Gifford Nielsen, Steve Young, Robbie Bosco, Heisman trophy winner Ty Detmer, Jim McMahon, Steve Sarkisian. That was just at BYU.

Chow also coached Phillip Rivers at North Carolina State when he was their offensive coordinator plus he held the same position at USC from 2001-04 seasons before he was pushed out the door. During that time at USC Chow was part of one of the best runs in USC history where the school won two national titles and coached in four straight BCS bowl games. During those years he coached Carson Palmer and Matt Leinart both who won Heisman Trophies.

He also was the offensive coordinator with the Tennessee Titans where he helped Vince Young win rookie of the year, and Young has not been the same player since Chow was his coach. Everywhere he has gone he has been a great coach for quarterbacks with the exception of his time at UCLA where Chow was handcuffed by head coach Rick Neuheisel, and did not have a competent quarterback. HIs one year at Utah was nothing special either as their starting quarterback was Jordan Wynn and he missed half the season with season ending shoulder surgery. The back Chow was working with was a division II transfer from Nebraska-Omaha in Jon Hays and does not have the talent to be a starting Pac-12 quarterback.

For whatever reasons during his years as a successful offensive coordinator, Chow was never able to land the job, there were rumors that Chow was a bad interview and is why he did not get the Stanford head coaching job a few years back.

Hawai'i is set to offer Chow a contract worth between $600,000 and $800,000 per to take over for George McMackin and a source close to the situation said money was not a hold up in the negotiations as Chow wants to finish his career in his home state of Hawai'i.

With Chow's age this seems more of a stop gap hire and a quick attention grabbing move for Hawai'i. Chow will bring some excitement to the school due to his reputation of being an offensive guru as well as being from Hawai'i.

One reason to be concerned is that Hawai'i is breaking in a new quarterback and the team is joining a new league, and even if Chow can rekindle his magic he had at USC and BYU it will only last a short time because I have a hard time believing that Chow will be around for more than five years at Hawai'i. Even with all that it could be worth it if Chow can get Hawaii back on the national scene and make the job attractive for the next head coach.

Chow beat out Texas assistant Duane Akina, Baylor associate coach Brian Norwood, Oregon State assistant Mark Banker and Jacksonville Jaguars offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter.

A press conference is expected to be held on Thursday, but it could be pushed back as it depends on when Chow can get to Hawai'i.

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