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Louisiana-Lafayette hires Billy Napier as football coach



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LAFAYETTE, La. (AP) — Louisiana-Lafayette hired Arizona State offensive coordinator Billy Napier as football coach Friday.

Napier replaced Mark Hudspeth, fired after the Ragin' Cajuns finished 5-7 this season. On Thursday, Hudspeth joined Mississippi State as associate head coach and tight ends coach.

"My family and I are excited and humbled for the opportunity to serve Cajun Nation and our Louisiana football program," Napier said. "We will make it a priority to bring in the best talent from the state of Louisiana and the nation."

Napier spent one season at Arizona State. He was promoted to associate head coach and offensive coordinator last week after Herm Edwards was hired as head coach to replace the fired Todd Graham.

Before his season at Arizona State, Napier was the wide receivers coach at Alabama, where he had two stints on Nick Saban's staff — one in 2011 and another from 2013-16. Alabama won national titles twice while Napier was on staff with the Crimson Tide.

In 2012, Napier was assistant head coach and quarterbacks coach at Colorado State. He other stops as an assistant included one at Clemson from 2006-2010. Napier was a star quarterback at Furman.

Later Friday, Arizona State promoted Rob Likens to offensive coordinator to replace Napier.

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