Houston Cougars: Three things Dana Holgorsen brings to the table

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Houston Cougars

Houston Cougars head coach Dana Holgorsen, formerly of the West Virginia Mountaineers (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)

Thing #2: Holgorsen will bring innovation as well as a prolific offense

The Houston Cougars were ranked 7th in total offense in the FBS rankings.  You can certainly credit offensive coordinator Kendal Briles for that notion.  I don’t think there was a problem putting points on the board but it’s all about having the right guy at the top and UH has certainly made their decision.

Holgorsen will still have quarterback D’Eriq King under center in his final season as a senior and Holgorsen will have to start searching for his next Will Grier, who’s expected to be a pick sometime in the first-round of a surprisingly QB-light 2019 NFL Draft.

Dana will help make up for the loss of the talented Briles, who decided to take the vacant offensive coordinator job with Florida State.

Although not as dynamic, I’d go as far to say that King was like Deshaun Watson-lite for the Houston Cougars.

Holgorsen loves the use RPOs and you better believe that King could run that play-call with precision!

That and his thirst for the Air Raid offense is going to be extremely fun to watch!

You have weapons for a reason and I just didn’t see them being utilized properly, especially when it appeared the team started to mail things in toward the end of the season.

The team had just topped over then No. 21-ranked USF amid a five-game win streak but went 1-4 the rest of the way, including a heartbreaking, yet deja vu-feeling 45-31 loss to SMU.

To break down the numbers, the 7th-ranked Houston Cougars offense put up 6,663 yards of total offense, averaging 512.5 yards per game along with 74 touchdowns.

In perspective, Holgorsen’s Mountaineers put up 6,147 yards — 512.3 yards per game — with 60 touchdowns.

Where were they ranked?

8th.

That’s right — just one spot below the Houston Cougars so it’d be laughable to say that there would be some sort of drop-off with the loss of Briles.

FOX 26’s Mark Berman recently reported that David Gibbs is set to return as defensive coordinator.  He was here for two seasons, working for then-head coach Tony Levine.

Gibbs elevated this defense to numbers that haven’t been seen ages as the offense has been more of a focal point.

His unit would perennially would be among the tops in the nation and back in his first season with the Houston Cougars (2013), the defense led the nation in turnover margin (+25) with 43 total forced.  His teams were ranked as high as 10th in 2014, his final season with the Coogs.

He’s had success at every level of the game, including his notable stint with the Denver Broncos, keeping their defense ranked in the Top 10 for the most part in his tenure from 2001-04.  He also with the Houston Texans for two seasons, from 2009-10.

Gibbs will help provide an immense balance between both sides of the football and with the right cast of characters on the field, this team is going to be extremely fun to watch.  It will be avant-garde leadership of sorts for this football team and that’s certainly what this team needs more of.

What’s the third thing that Dana will bring?

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