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Potential Coach: Get to know Jay Norvell

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The next name on the current list at foot ball coaching scoop is Jay Norvell. While most of the chatter coming out now focuses around Quinn and Barret I suspect that Norvell's name is pretty high on Manuals list. UB did well by going after a Big-12 offensive coordinator slash quarterbacks coach in the past so why not try going in that same direction?

Norvell is something of a journeyman, not a plus in my book but it has afforded him the opportunity to lay down roots in many recruiting hot beds, include some (but not all) of those nurtured by outgoing coach turner Gill.

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Norvell was a 1985 all Big-10 defensive back for the Hawkeye's where he played from 1981-1985. In 85 he lead the conference with seven interceptions en route to Iowa's league title and a Rose Bowl appearance. During the NFL strike of 1987 Norvell landed a spot as a linebacker for the Chicago bears where he recorded 3 sacks in six games.

Norvell started coaching as a graduate assistant at Iowa in 1986 before joining the Northern Iowa staff in 1988. He only stayed on the Northern Iowa Staff for a year before being picked up as an offensive line coach for the Wisconsin Badgers from 1989-1994.

After Wisconsin he returned to his alma matter to coach quarterbacks and wide receivers as an assistant coach for the Hawkeyes. While serving on Dan McCarney staff he improved the Iowa passing by nearly 100 yards per game and producing ten players who would see action in the NFL.

Norvell coached the wide receivers and tight ends for two NFL squads, Indianapolis (1998-2001) and the Oakland Raiders from 2001-2003. While with the Colts he worked with Marvin Harrison on a very potent Indy passing game. While on the Raiders Norvell is credited as having a major hand in the development of the Oakland passing attack which proved to be one of the most dangerous in the NFL.

When he left the Raiders he was offered a job as the offensive coordinator for the Nebraska Corn Huskers (2004-2006). His offenses would be some of the best in college football, in 2006 his squad was one of just two schools to rank in the top 25 in rushing offense, passing offense, total offense and scoring offense. Unfortunately Nebraska's total lack of defense doomed the 2006 squad and the coaching staff at NU.

He would serve a year at UCLA after Bo Peleni took over the Huskers but would quickly land at OU where he has served for two year, including an appearance at the National Championship Game last season.

The Positives of Norvell:
  • Proven offensive mind yet has playing experience on defense
  • Solid Recruiter with ties to the Big-12 and Big-10 territories
  • Developer of NFL caliber talent
The Negatives of Norvell:
  • Moves around a lot, sometimes his choice sometimes its not
  • No recruiting roots in the south east (where UB is pulling from)
  • Name has been mentioned for other job's, could drag out the process
Would this be a good hire for UB?

Yes, Norvell has nearly as much experience as anyone on 'the list' and more than most. I am a bit worried that he might not be able to go out in our recruiting areas and pull in those last five scholarships we have, quickly, but it may be worth it down the line.