By JOEL COLEMAN
Mississippi State head coach Dan Mullen is reaching into his past in order to try and help the present and future of the Bulldogs.
Brett Elliott, a former quality control assistant at MSU under Mullen from 2012-14, will be the Bulldogs’ next quarterbacks coach the Starkville Daily News confirmed on Tuesday. Elliott replaces Brian Johnson, who left last month to become the offensive coordinator at Houston.
Elliott spent last season as the offensive coordinator at Texas State following a successful one-year stint as co-offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach at James Madison University. At James Madison in 2015, Elliott coached the Colonial Athletic Association Offensive Player of the Year, quarterback Vad Lee.
Under Elliott’s guidance, Lee led the nation in total offense by averaging 375.5 yards per game. Lee passed for 2,190 yards and 21 touchdowns and rushed for 814 yards and eight scores. Lee also became the only player in NCAA Division I history to pass and run for 275 yards in one game when he threw for 289 yards and rushed for 275 in a James Madison win over SMU.
Elliott will try and push Mississippi State’s quarterbacks to similar heights as Lee. Elliott inherits an already-talented stable of signal callers at MSU including Nick Fitzgerald, who led the Southeastern Conference in total yardage last season, and four-star freshman quarterback Keytaon Thompson, who just joined the Bulldogs in their most recent signing class.
Though in a different role, Elliott has experienced success in Starkville before. He was a part of three MSU coaching staffs, including the 2014 group that guided the Bulldogs to a 10-win season and the school’s first-ever No. 1 ranking. Now, Elliott will have the chance to help MSU get back to being among the nation’s elite squads as quarterbacks coach of the Bulldogs.