We have learned that Louisiana Tech has hired Skip Holtz as its next head coach.
Holtz walks into a situation built for big-time passing but without the principles that made the Bulldogs' offense so successful in 2012. Gone are offensive coordinator Tony Franklin (to Sonny Dykes' staff at California) and quarterback Colby Cameron (to graduation). However, Holtz will have standout running back Kenneth Dixon, FBS's leading scorer in 2012 with 28 rushing touchdowns as a true freshman, for three more years as Louisiana Tech prepares to move to Conference USA. The Bulldogs move into a league with which Holtz is intimately familiar after his five years as East Carolina's head coach.
Holtz rose through the ranks as an offensive coach, working as a graduate assistant at Florida State from 1987-88 and the wide receivers coach at Colorado State in 1989 before joining his father Lou's staff at Notre Dame as the wide receivers coach in 1990. He served the Fighting Irish's offensive coordinator from 1992-93 before accepting the head coaching job at Connecticut (at the time a Division I-AA member) from 1994-98. He then rejoined his father's staff, this time at South Carolina, as the offensive coordinator (1999-03) and quarterbacks coach (2004) before taking head coaching jobs at East Carolina (2005-09) and South Florida (2010-12).
In 13 years as a head coach, Holtz holds an 88-71 record with two Conference USA titles, five bowl appearances and one trip to the NCAA Division I-AA playoffs.
Louisiana Tech has settled into a definitive trend in its head coaching hires. As USA Today's Paul Myerberg pointed out today, the school's last four head coaches are all the sons of prominent head coaches: Jack Bicknell, Jr., Derek Dooley, Dykes and Holtz.
As always, we will update with more details as they become available.