LSU Tigers hire Pitt Panthers' Matt Canada as offensive coordinator, QB coach

By The Sports Xchange  |  Dec. 14, 2016 at 11:32 AM
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The LSU Tigers hired Pittsburgh's Matt Canada as their offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach on Wednesday.

New LSU head coach Ed Orgeron made the hiring of a top offensive coordinator one of his biggest priorities. The Tigers last month removed the interim tag after Orgeron went 5-2 as Les Miles' replacement.

"When I first sat down with (athletic director) Joe Alleva and we mapped out a plan for LSU football, we agreed that we were going to demand excellence on both sides of the ball," Orgeron said in a statement. "We want a defense that's impenetrable and an offense that's exciting and unstoppable. Anyone who wants to play football at the highest levels is going to want to play at LSU."

Canada, 44, joins the LSU staff after spending the 2016 season at Pittsburgh, where as offensive coordinator and quarterback coach, he guided a Panthers offense that ranked No. 10 in the nation in scoring (42.3) and averaged 447.5 total yards per game. The Panthers also led the nation in red-zone touchdown percentage at 82 percent.

The Tigers ranked 60th nationally in total offense (425.7 yards per game) and 67th in scoring offense (28.3 points per game) this season.

"We have a real opportunity under Coach Orgeron to propel LSU football to another level," Canada said in a statement. "The chance to put together a high-powered offense with the athletic ability available at LSU and the leadership of Coach O is incredibly exciting.

"I've long-respected Coach Orgeron's ability to recruit, lead and motivate. What he did as head coach at LSU under difficult circumstances was really impressive. I'm thrilled to be a part of the vision for the program."

Prior to his one-year stint at Pittsburgh, Canada was offensive coordinator at N.C. State from 2013 through 2015, at Wisconsin in 2012, at Northern Illinois in 2011 and at his alma mater, Indiana, from 2007 through 2010.

Orgeron waited to allow his friend, Alabama offensive coordinator Lane Kiffin, to test the head-coaching market. Canada was hired two days after Kiffin accepted a position as head coach at Florida Atlantic.

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