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Utah State coach Blake Anderson awarded 2-year contract extension

Blake Anderson led Utah State to an 11-3 record, a Mountain West title, and a win over Oregon State in the inaugural Jimmy Kimmel LA Bowl before being rewarded with a 2-year contract extension, Thursday, Dec. 24, 2021.

Blake Anderson led Utah State to an 11-3 record, a Mountain West title, and a win over Oregon State in the inaugural Jimmy Kimmel LA Bowl before being rewarded with a 2-year contract extension, Thursday, Dec. 24, 2021. (Courtesy: Utah State Athletics)



Estimated read time: 2-3 minutes

LOGAN β€” Following one of the most successful football seasons in Utah State history, the university has awarded first-year head coach Blake Anderson a two-year contract extension

The university signed him through the 2027 season. The details of the agreement were not disclosed.

In an unprecedented turnaround, Anderson inherited a team that went 1-5 in 2020 and led them to a 11-3 record and a Mountain West Championship in his first season. The Aggies defeated Washington State on the road in the season opener and Oregon State in the LA Bowl. It's the first time in school history the Aggies have defeated two Power Five schools in the same year.

"Under head coach Blake Anderson, this year's football team captured the hearts of all of Aggie nation and we are fortunate to have him at the helm of our program," Utah State President Noelle E. Cockett said in a press release.

"Blake's character, integrity and passion for the academic, personal, and athletic growth of our student-athletes have fueled the success of this team," athletic director John Hartwell added. "Under coach Anderson's leadership, the future of Aggie football is very bright."

Anderson received national recognition for his performance for the season and was a finalist for the Eddie Robinson Coach of the Year award, which is handed out to the top coach in College Football. He was also named the American Football Coaches Association Region 5 Coach of the Year.

Out of 19 first-year FBS head coaches in 2021, Anderson was the only one to win nine or more games.

Hired in December 2020, Anderson signed a five-year, $5.3 million contract with the university.

Joining the Aggies after a seven-year stint as head coach at Arkansas State, Anderson assembled the most diverse coaching staff in the nation, according to the university. He brought in over a dozen transfer players and convinced much of the talent already on the team, including wide receiver Deven Thompkins, to return.

Anderson quickly gained the admiration of his players in Logan and led them to a successful season.

"He believed in us," defensive end Nick Heninger said following Utah State's win over Oregon State. "We all bought into this man's philosophy. We trusted him and I just don't know if everybody knows how special of a coach we do have here."

Anderson was awarded at least $150,000 in bonuses for his efforts this season. He earned a $75,000 bonus for participating in a bowl game, $50,000 for winning the conference championship, $25,000 for clinching the Mountain Division title, and will earn an additional bonus if the Aggies finish the year in the top 25 in either the Associated Press or Coaches poll.

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