Cardinals OC Rumors: Arizona Interested in Texas State Head Coach Jake Spavital

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistJanuary 9, 2019

MORGANTOWN, WV - OCTOBER 06: Offensive coordinator Jake Spavital of the West Virginia Mountaineers looks on during the game against the Kansas Jayhawks at Mountaineer Field on October 6, 2018 in Morgantown, West Virginia. The Mountaineers won 38-22. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
Joe Robbins/Getty Images

The Arizona Cardinals are reportedly looking toward the college ranks again as they search for their next offensive coordinator under head coach Kliff Kingsbury

According to Bruce Feldman of Fox Sports, the NFC West team sees Texas State head coach Jake Spavital as a candidate for the open position. Feldman noted Spavital and Kingsbury—who was also coaching at the college level as USC's offensive coordinator when Arizona hired him—have experience together from their time on the Houston Cougars coaching staff.  

Texas State introduced Spavital as its next head coach in November after he was the offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach for West Virginia in 2017 and 2018. He was also the offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach at California in 2016 and Texas A&M from 2013 through 2015 after serving as West Virginia's quarterbacks coach in 2011 and 2012.

Spavital has worked with quarterbacks such as Johnny Manziel, Will Grier and Geno Smith at the collegiate level, which is notable since the Cardinals have a young signal-caller in Josh Rosen.

Arizona made him the quarterback of the future when it selected him with the No. 10 overall pick of the 2018 draft, but he struggled as a rookie. The UCLA product appeared in 14 games and completed 55.2 percent of his passes for 2,278 yards, 11 touchdowns and 14 interceptions.

The Cardinals need to drastically improve on the offensive side of the ball if they are going to compete in the NFC West under Kingsbury. They finished dead last in the league in total yards and points on the way to a 3-13 record in 2018 even though they had the talented David Johnson at running back.

The hiring of Kingsbury suggests Arizona is well aware of the strides it needs to make on offense, and it could add a coach in Spavital who was largely responsible for leading a West Virginia team that was 10th in the nation in points per game in 2018.

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