Jay Norvell enters his second season as the head coach of the Colorado State Rams, hoping to build on his initial season and return the program to college football relevancy in the Mountain West. Who makes up the rest of the Colorado State coaching staff for the 2023 college football campaign?
Colorado State Rams Coaching Staff 2023
Head Coach, Jay Norvell
Norvell was appointed as the 24th head coach of the Colorado State football program in Dec. 2021 to much fanfare. After multiple difficult seasons for the program, which had seen them flounder as a college football force, Norvell’s appointment was seen as a significant step to bring about a different offensive identity and culture within the program.
It’s easy to see why athletic director Joe Parker wanted to bring Norvell to Fort Collins. A vastly experienced and successful coach at multiple levels, he has proven himself as an offensive savant while showcasing the ability to turn around college football programs into conference powerhouses.
The most recent example of this was at Nevada, where Norvell returned the program to success not seen since their days in the WAC. Under his stewardship, the Wolfpack had four consecutive winning seasons for the first time in almost 10 years and became a conference-leading offense led by quarterback Carson Strong.
While he’s most recently known for his success at Nevada, Norvell has been involved in coaching at every level of college football since beginning his career as a graduate assistant at his alma mater, Iowa. Meanwhile, he also spent six years coaching in the NFL, including a trip to the Super Bowl with the Oakland Raiders.
While he was a defensive back as a player, Norvell has spent his coaching career exclusively on the offensive side of the ball. His entire coaching résumé, from the college level to the NFL, can be found below.
- Iowa (graduate assistant, 1986-1987)
- Northern Iowa (WR coach, 1988)
- Wisconsin (OL and WR coach, special teams coordinator, 1989-1994)
- Iowa State (QB and WR coach, assistant head coach, 1995-1997)
- Indianapolis Colts (WR coach, 1998-2001)
- Oakland Raiders (TE coach, 2002-2003)
- Nebraska (QB coach and offensive coordinator, 2004-2006)
- UCLA (QB coach and OC, 2007)
- Oklahoma (WR coach and assistant OC, 2008-2010)
- Oklahoma (co-OC and WR coach, 2011-2014)
- Texas (WR coach, 2015)
- Arizona State (WR coach and offensive passing game coordinator, 2016)
- Nevada (head coach, 2017-2021)
- Colorado State (head coach, 2022-2023)
Defensive Coordinator, Freddie Banks
After directing a dominant defense at Montana State in 2021, Freddie Banks joined the Colorado State coaching staff as the defensive coordinator for the 2022 college football season. His appointment reunited him with head coach Norvell after the two worked together for a season at Nevada in 2020.
In addition to his duties as the defensive coordinator, Banks is also responsible for coaching the Rams’ defensive backs. His coaching experience has heavily involved working with the secondary while serving as the defensive coordinator in Louisiana high school football and at the FCS level of college football.
However, it’s his stint at Montana State that has earned Banks such acclaim and ultimately his job on the Colorado State coaching staff. Under his tutelage, Troy Andersen earned All-American honors while being named the Big Sky Conference’s Defensive Player of the Year. Banks’ full coaching résumé can be found below.
- Minnesota State-Moorhead (DC and CB coach, 2011-2012)
- Nicholls (CB coach, 2013-2014)
- Livonia High School (DC, 2015)
- Midwestern State (secondary coach, 2016-2018)
- Stephen F. Austin (CB coach, 2019)
- Nevada (CB coach, 2020)
- Montana State (DC and DB coach, 2021)
- Colorado State (DC and DB coach, 2022-2023)
Special Teams Coordinator, Tommy Perry
After starting his coaching career as the assistant strength and conditioning coach at Texas in 2004, Tommy Perry has established himself as one of the top special teams coaches in the country. He joined the Colorado State coaching staff in 2022, reuniting with Coach Norvell. However, in between, he coached UTSA’s Conference USA title-winning special teams unit.
Quarterback Coach, Matt Mumme
A former QB at Kentucky between 1997 and 1999, Matt Mumme got his first coaching gig working with QBs at Southeastern Louisiana. Establishing himself as an “Air Raid” specialist, Mumme has helped lead multiple offensive playmakers to all-conference recognition. He joined the Colorado State coaching staff with head coach Norvell from Nevada in 2022.
Offensive Line Coach, Bill Best
Other than his first coaching gig as the offensive coordinator at Ranger College and a two-year stint as the TE coach at Rice, Bill Best has spent his entire coaching career working with the offensive line. A former lineman at Louisiana Monroe as a player, he joined the Colorado State coaching staff alongside head coach Norvell in 2022 after working for two years at Nevada.
Tight End Coach, James Finley
A highly productive high school and college football pass-catcher during his playing career, James Finley transitioned to coaching in 2015. Prior to joining the Colorado State coaching staff for the 2022 campaign, he’d coached exclusively at the high school level. That experience included a four-year spell at California powerhouse Mater Dei, where he worked with the WR room.
Running Back Coach, Jeremy Moses
Although he started his coaching career at North Alabama, Jeremy Moses made his name at his alma mater, Stephen F. Austin. A record-setting QB for the Lumberjacks, he returned to coach the position for the 2012 and 2013 seasons before switching to RB coach from 2014-2016 and WR coach from 2017-2018.
He joined the Colorado State coaching staff in 2022 after spending the previous three seasons coaching at the high school level in Texas.
Cornerback Coach, Marcus Patton
Marcus Patton joined the Colorado State coaching staff in 2022 as the cornerback coach, having spent the previous six seasons as the defensive coordinator and secondary coach at Tarleton State. Patton oversaw some of the most successful units in program history. His college résumé also includes stints at USF and UCLA, and he started his career as a high school coach.
Linebacker Coach, Adam Pilapil
After playing linebacker at Wyoming for four years, Adam Pilapil began his coaching career with the Cowboys in a defensive quality control role. Gaining Power Five experience at Kansas State in 2020, he was a part of the Montana State staff with DC Banks before joining the Colorado State coaching staff as the linebackers coach from the 2022 college football season.
Wide Receiver Coach, Chad Savage
Having originally joined the Colorado State coaching staff as the TE coach, Chad Savage transitioned to WR coach and led Tory Horton to a 1000-yard campaign in his first season with the program. In addition to his role as the WR coach, Savage also acts as the recruiting coordinator for the Rams, where he is seen as the highest-ranked recruiter in the Mountain West.
Defensive Line Coach, Buddha Williams
After a highly productive playing career for Charleston, LeDominique “Buddha” Williams began his coaching career as the linebacker coach at his alma mater in 2010. Stints at Ashland, Ohio, Illinois, UT-Martin, and North Dakota State — where he coached three FCS All-Americans — led him to the Colorado State coaching staff, where he serves as the DL coach.