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Terps Hire Matt Canada As Offensive Coordinator

January 24, 2018
Maryland hired well-regarded and well-traveled Matt Canada to be its new offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach, the program announced Jan. 23.

"Matt has a unique ability to utilize any and all types of personnel and still produce extremely explosive offenses," Terps head coach DJ Durkin said in a release. "He's a very versatile coach that has experience developing impact players at every offensive position. Matt's had a great deal of success everywhere he's been, and we couldn't be more thrilled to have him here at Maryland."

Before departing for Florida State earlier this month, Walt Bell served as Maryland's offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach from 2016-2017 

Canada has held the positions of offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach for the past 11 years at six different programs -- Indiana from 2007-2010; Northern Illinois, 2011; Wisconsin, 2012; N.C. State, 2013-2015; Pittsburgh, 2016; Louisiana State, 2017. He began his coaching career as a student assistant at Indiana in 1993. 

Canada signed a three-year deal with LSU before 2017 but was fired after this past season. LSU ranked seventh out of 14 teams in the Southeastern Conference in yards per game (412.1) and ninth in points (28.1) in 2017. Quarterback Danny Etling threw for 2,463 yards and 16 touchdowns on 60 percent passing, while running backs Derrius Guice and Darrel Williams combined to run for 2,071 yards and 20 touchdowns. 

Pitt ranked fourth in the 14-team Atlantic Coast Conference in yards per game (446.8) and second in points (40.9) in 2016. It was the highest-scoring offense in Panthers history. Pitt's quarterback was Nathan Peterman, who threw for 2,855 yards and 27 touchdowns on 60.5 percent passing. He also ran for 286 yards and three scores. 

N.C. State ranked sixth in the ACC in yards per game (412.8) and third in points per game (33.2) in 2015. Quarterback Jacoby Brissett threw for 2,662 yards and 20 touchdowns on 60 percent passing, and ran for 370 yards and six scores. Brissett combined to throw 43 touchdowns and 11 interceptions under Canada from 2014-2015.

One of Canada's top priorities will be the development of quarterbacks Tyrrell Pigrome and Kasim Hill, both of whom are coming off torn ACLs, like he did with Peterman and Brissett. Peterman is now with the Buffalo Bills and Brissett, the Indianapolis Colts.

Canada has brought similar play-calling tendencies to wherever he's been recently. About 63 percent of LSU's and Pitt's plays in 2017 and 2016 were runs, while 56 and 57 percent of N.C. State's plays were runs in 2015 and 2014. Canada also likes to spread the ball around; seven different receivers caught double-digit passes in each of his offenses in 2017 and 2016, and eight in 2015. 

Canada is well-known for using a variety of pre-snap motions to create confusion, and in turn loves to take advantage of the jet sweep -- or at least the threat of it. Canada also likes to feature unbalanced lines, which bring extra tackles, tight ends and fullbacks into play. And he'll use the "shovel option." 

One play that highlighted Canada's creativity was when Pitt left tackle Brian O'Neill scored on a 24-yard touchdown run against Georgia Tech in 2016. It was hardly the only exciting play for Pitt that season. 

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Durkin also promoted wide receivers coach and recruiting ace Chris Beatty to co-offensive coordinator.

"Chris is an integral part of our coaching staff, and I'm excited to have him in this role," Durkin said. "I'm proud of the work he's done with our student-athletes and am happy to have him continue playing an instrumental role in the upward direction of the program."

Follow Luke on Twitter @luke_jackson10 

Photo Credit: Courtesy of LSU Athletics