Michigan State offensive coordinator Dan Roushar has accepted a job with the New Orleans Saints and will not return in 2013, the school confirmed Saturday.
Roushar: "This is an opportunity I simply couldn't pass up."
Roushar accepted a position as the Saints’ running back coach after six seasons in East Lansing. He was previously the Spartans’ offensive line coach and took over as offensive coordinator in 2011 after Don Treadwell accepted the head job at Miami (Ohio).
“The New Orleans Saints and Michigan State are built on similar models, with a focus on character and people,” Roushar said in a statement. “New Orleans has won a Super Bowl, and over the last five years, the Saints have been one of the winningest organizations in the NFL. … Professionally, this is an opportunity I simply couldn’t pass up. Now as a running backs coach, I have the chance to learn the interworking of the NFL.”
Roushar received heavy criticism from fans this season due to MSU’s offensive woes, as the Spartans ranked 108 nationally in scoring offense. But Roushar also helped navigate the 2011 offense, which ranked No. 37 nationally with an average of 30 points per game en route to the inaugural Big Ten title game.
“Dan Roushar has been a loyal and dedicated assistant for the last eight years, including the past six seasons at Michigan State,” coach Mark Dantonio said. He’s a great teacher and a tireless recruiter. Dan certainly played a critical role in helping build a solid foundation here at Michigan State. We’re greatful for the effort and energy he’s invested in our progam.”
So the Spartans are left searching for a new offensive coordinator just several days after hiring Ted Gill’s replacement, defensive line coach Ron Burton. And should MSU promote internally, two members of the offensive staff have previous coordinator experience. Running backs coach Brad Salem served as offensive coordinator and eventually head coach at Augustana College and quarterbacks coach Dave Warner served as Connecticut’s offensive coordinator from 1999-2000.
Roushar, meanwhile, becomes the third member of Dantonio’s staff to leave in the past two years following Treadwell and Gill.
“Michigan State is poised to have a tremendous year in 2013,” Roushar said. “I’ve been incredibly blessed to have worked alongside coach Dantonio, a talented coaching staff and gifted players. The last six years at Michigan State have been quite rewarding. … Coach Dantonio has built something special – it’s a program that pursues excellence in all aspects, not only on the field competing for championships, but also off the field in the classroom and in the community.”