David Shaw only needed to look down the hall from his corner office to find Stanford’s new offensive coordinator.
Shaw promoted run-game coordinator Mike Bloomgren to offensive coordinator Tuesday, choosing continuity above all else given the Cardinal’s recent run of success. Bloomgren also will continue to coach the offensive line as he has the past two seasons.
”He was the only choice,” said Shaw, who has won Pac-12 Coach of the Year in each of his first two seasons. ”We didn’t interview anybody else, and we didn’t want to interview anyone else. Mike has done an outstanding job with our offensive line and run game, though he’s more than an offensive line coach. He understands our offense and how diverse we need to be to attack defenses. We hope to continue the success we’ve had on offense, while also improving in many areas, and Mike is the right guy to lead us to our goals.”
Bloomgren replaces Pep Hamilton, who left earlier this month to be reunited with Andrew Luck as the Indianapolis Colts’ offensive coordinator. Bloomgren will take over the official title of ”Andrew Luck Director of Offense.” Last May, a donor who chose to remain anonymous endowed the position in honor of the school’s record-setting quarterback.
Under Bloomgren’s guidance, four of Stanford’s five starting offensive linemen earned all-conference honors last season. That includes David Yankey, a second-team All-American who won the Pac-12’s Morris Trophy for top offensive lineman while shuffling between left tackle and guard.
Stanford outlasted Wisconsin 20-14 to capture the program’s first Rose Bowl victory since 1972 this season. The Cardinal finished with a No. 7 ranking and are one of only three teams – Oregon and Wisconsin being the others – that have made a BCS bowl three straight years.
Shaw also announced two other staff changes.
Mike Sanford will take over as quarterbacks and wide receivers coach while continuing his duties as recruiting coordinator, and former quarterback Tavita Pritchard will shift from defensive assistant to running backs coach.
Sanford helped Stepfan Taylor become Stanford’s career rushing leader (4,300 yards) and set school marks for career touchdowns (45), 100-yard rushing games (21) and career rushing attempts (843). In 2011, the Cardinal ranked 18th in the country with an average of 210.6 yards per game.
Pritchard has worked under defensive coordinator Derek Mason the past two seasons. He also started 19 games at quarterback for Stanford during the 2007 and 2008 seasons, starting the program’s renaissance.
Pritchard is best known for leading the Cardinal’s 24-23 upset at No. 2 Southern California in his first career start. Stanford entered that game as a 41-point underdog.
Stanford begins the first half of its split spring practice schedule Feb. 25. The Cardinal & White Spring Game is April 13.