EAST LANSING, Mich. – Jim Bollman, the offensive coordinator on Ohio State’s 2002 national championship team, was hired Monday as Michigan State’s co-offensive coordinator.
Spartans head coach Mark Dantonio, who has coached with Bollman in three different collegiate programs, also announced that quarterbacks coach Dan Warner was named the other co-offensive coordinator. Bollman and Warner will fill the role previously held by Dan Roushar, who left to become running backs coach of the New Orleans Saints.
Defensive coordinator Pat Narduzzi also was promoted to assistant head coach. He has run the defense for six seasons while attaining a high level of success. MSU, Alabama and Florida State are the only three major college programs ranking in the Top 10 the past two seasons in total defense, rushing defense and scoring defense.
Warner will now coach running backs, while running backs coach Brad Salem assumes the quarterback coaching position in addition to serving as the recruiting coordinator.
Bollman, 58, has 36 years of college and pro coaching experience. He was the offensive coordinator/offensive line coach at Ohio State (2001-11), and also will coach the tight ends at MSU. He was hired as the offensive line coach at Purdue last month after spending 2012 as the offensive line coach/running game coordinator at Boston College.
“This is the fourth time in my career that I’ve had an opportunity to work with Jim Bollman, so there’s definitely a comfort level there,” said Dantonio. “He has a tremendous amount of football knowledge — especially on the offensive side of the ball.
“Jim has been an offensive coordinator for 11 of the last 12 years. During his tenure in Columbus, Ohio State won six Big Ten championships, a national championship and played in two other BCS national championship games. He has performed under pressure at the highest level and on the biggest stage. With pressure comes experience, and Jim has been rock solid in those situations. He’s respected for his development as well as treatment of his players. He’s simply a ball coach.”
Dantonio said some adjustments will be made in spring practices, which begin March 19.
“We might simplify some things, yet become more diversified as an offense,” said Dantonio. “Throughout the spring, things will be added and subtracted from the offense. Changes aren’t being made for the sake of change; changes are being made with a purpose. With that mindset, we can create different opportunities for our playmakers.”
The offense, aside from tailback Le’Veon Bell, was a disappointment in 2012. Bell opted to enter the NFL Draft after his junior season, and incumbent starter Andrew Maxwell is expected to be pushed by several younger quarterbacks.
Bollman coached 2006 Heisman Trophy winner Troy Smith and 23 first-team All-Big Ten selections for the Buckeyes. He spent three seasons in the NFL as the tight ends coach for both the Philadelphia Eagles (1998) and Chicago Bears (1999-2000).
Dantonio and Bollman have coached together at Youngstown State (1986-90), MSU (1995-97) and OSU (2001-03). Both are part of the Jim Tressel coaching tree, having worked for Tressel at OSU and Youngstown State.
Bollman was the offensive line coach for three seasons in East Lansing under Nick Saban. Flozell Adams flourished at MSU under Bollman, and was named the 1997 Big Ten Offensive Lineman of the Year. Spartans offensive linemen earned All-Big Ten recognition six times under Bollman.
He coached the Atlantic Coast Conference’s Jacobs Trophy winner (top blocker) in Ray Roberts in 1991 and Mark Dixon in 1993 as the offensive line coach at the University of Virginia. Bollman also coached at Miami of Ohio and North Carolina State.
Bollman was a co-captain and a standout offensive lineman at Ohio University. He and his wife, Terri, have two daughters, Courtney and Stephanie.