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Crowton leaves LSU to become Terps' offensive coordinator

By Eric Prisbell
Washington Post Staff Writer
Friday, January 14, 2011; D03

Gary Crowton, a former head football coach at Brigham Young and Louisiana Tech, has resigned from his offensive coordinator position at Louisiana State to take the same position at Maryland.

Crowton, 53, told Gannett Newspapers that Maryland offered him a three-year contract at $500,000 per year during an interview with the school on Wednesday. Crowton will reunite with new Maryland Coach Randy Edsall, with whom he worked at Boston College from 1991 to 1993.

Crowton will direct a Maryland offense that will return many of its top playmakers, including quarterback Danny O'Brien, the ACC rookie of the year, and running backs D.J. Adams and Davin Meggett. Four of five starting offensive linemen also will return.

During Crowton's four seasons at LSU, the Tigers went 40-13 and won the 2007 national title. But Crowton came under criticism in 2010 after a second consecutive season in which the offense struggled. The Tigers ranked last in the Southeastern Conference in passing and 86th nationally in total yards per game in 2010.

During his career, Crowton has coached seven quarterbacks who have gone on to be selected in the NFL draft. Before coming to LSU, Crowton spent two years as offensive coordinator at Oregon, where he helped the Ducks finish in the top 10 nationally in passing both seasons.

During his four seasons as BYU's head coach from 2001 to 2004, Crowton led his alma mater to a 26-23 record. He led the Cougars to a 12-2 record during a 2001 season in which the offense scored 40 or more points 10 times. BYU led the nation in total offense (542.9 yards per game) and scoring (46.8 points per game) as the Cougars won the Mountain West title and Crowton earned conference coach of the year honors.

Before taking the BYU job, Crowton spent two seasons as offensive coordinator for the Chicago Bears. In 1999, his offense ranked third in the NFL in passing. Crowton spent three seasons as Louisiana Tech's head coach from 1996 to 1998, leading the Bulldogs to a 21-13 record.

Edsall announced Thursday that Tom Brattan, the Terrapins' offensive line coach for the past 10 years, will remain with the team. Edsall already has retained Don Brown and Lee Hull from former coach Ralph Friedgen's staff. Brown was defensive coordinator and Hull was wide receivers coach under Friedgen, who was fired after 10 seasons.

Edsall has also added four others to his coaching staff: defensive line coach Greg Gattuso, special teams/outside linebackers coach Lyndon Johnson, running backs coach David Walker and strength and conditioning coach Andrew Wilson.

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