Mississippi State

Mississippi State has found its next football coach, according to reports

In this Oct. 5, 2016, file photo, Penn State offensive coordinator Joe Moorhead looks on during NCAA college football practice in State College, Pa. Moorhead was a successful FCS head coach at Fordham before being lured to Happy Valley by James Franklin. His first season with Penn State was a rousing success. According to multiple reports Moorhead has been hired at Mississippi State to lead its football program. He replaces Dan Mullen, who was recently hired by Florida.
In this Oct. 5, 2016, file photo, Penn State offensive coordinator Joe Moorhead looks on during NCAA college football practice in State College, Pa. Moorhead was a successful FCS head coach at Fordham before being lured to Happy Valley by James Franklin. His first season with Penn State was a rousing success. According to multiple reports Moorhead has been hired at Mississippi State to lead its football program. He replaces Dan Mullen, who was recently hired by Florida. AP

According to multiple reports Mississippi State will hire Penn State offensive coordinator Joe Moorhead as its next head football coach. If the hire goes through, the Nittany Lions play caller will replace Dan Mullen, who recently left Starkville to take over Florida’s program.

National college football reporter Brett McMurphy was the first to report the news. He added the deal was expected to be finalized in the coming days.

Moorhead has been the OC at Penn State for two seasons. Prior to that, Moorhead was Fordham’s head coach from 2012-15, leading his alma mater to a 38-13 record. He was also an assistant at UConn, Akron and Georgetown.

Penn State’s offense is averaging 453.3 yards per game and scoring at a 41.6 clip, up from 37.6 ppg in his first season.

Other coaches who were linked to the MSU job included Alabama defensive coordinator Jeremy Pruitt, Clemson DC Brent Venables and Miami DC Manny Diaz, who previously coached at MSU two separate times.

A Pittsburgh native, Moorhead doesn’t have deep Southern ties, but neither did Mullen. All the New Hampshire native ended up doing was compile a 69-46 record to become one of the Bulldogs’ most successful coaches in program history.

Many national reports have applauded MSU’s apparent hire. Sports Illustrated’s Bruce Feldman wrote a lengthy article in September entitled “The Oral History of How Joe Moorhead Created Penn State’s Cutting-Edge Offense.”

MSU’s Scout.com reporter Steve Robertson tweeted a press conference will be Thursday.

Patrick Ochs: 228-896-2321, @PatrickOchs

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