Sports News

Jan 24, 2012 4:47 PM by Scott Breen - Q2 Sports

Cats hire offensive coordinator, running backs coach

BILLINGS - Montana State football coach Rob Ash isn't wasting any time filling his vacant coaching positions.

Todd Sturdy, the former offensive coordinator at Washington State, gets the nod as MSU's new offensive coordinator.

Final paperwork was being completed Tuesday afternoon, so MSU didn't make a formal announcement. But Ash says he's "thrilled" with what Sturdy will bring to the Bobcat program.

Sturdy spent four seasons under coach Paul Wulff as Washington State's offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach. The Cougars finished 9-40 in that span before the staff was fired in November. Washington State later hired former Texas Tech head coach Mike Leach.

A former head coach at St. Ambrose University, Sturdy joined the WSU staff in 2008 after serving as Paul Wulff's offensive coordinator at Eastern Washington during the 2007 season.

During his one year at EWU where the Eagles went 9-4 and reached the 2008 FCS quarterfinals before falling to eventual champion Appalachian State. Sturdy also guided an offense that set school records for pass completions (287) and touchdown passes (36). EWU finished the 2007 campaign fifth nationally in total offense and eighth in passing offense. Quarterback Matt Nichols was named the Big Sky Offensive Player of the Year while wide receiver Aaron Boyce and offensive lineman Matt Alfred each garnered All-America honors, with Boyce being named to the second team and Alfred the third team.

Prior to EWU, Sturdy was 85-40 in 12 seasons as head coach for his alma mater, St. Ambrose in Davenport, Iowa.

Texas high school coach (LBJ) Demo Odems has accepted a job as the running backs coach at MSU. A 1992 graduate of LBJ who went on to play at the University of Iowa, Odems has college coaching experience on his resume as he was a graduate assistant at the University of Wisconsin and in 2006, he was the wide receivers coach at the University of Arkansas-Monticello.

Odems led LBJ to a 6-4 record this fall and the Jaguars won their first outright district championship since 1995. Odems, who also went 0-9 during a turbulent season at Johnston in 2007, was 22-19 in four season with the Jaguars.

Montana State has seemingly built a pipeline into the Central Texas area this month. The Bobcats had 19 Texans on their roster last season, and recently secured verbal commitments from Vandegrift quarterback Dakota Prukop, Lake Travis offensive lineman Marshall Womack and Westwood offensive lineman Ross Lodge.

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