Miami is hiring Houston assistant Shannon Dawson to be its offensive coordinator, a person with knowledge of the decision told The Associated Press.
The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the deal was still being finalized and needed approval from the university.
Dawson has spent the last four years with Houston, the last three of those as its offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach. In those three years, Houston has thrown 87 touchdown passes, which is 13th-most among all FBS programs.
The Cougars also have completed 65.2% of their passes in that span and thrown for 10,010 yards – both of those stats ranking 21st nationally over the last three years.
Dawson previously was an offensive coordinator at Southern Miss, Kentucky, West Virginia, Stephen F. Austin and Millsaps. Dawson has coached in eight bowl games – including an Orange Bowl with West Virginia – along with the FCS playoffs and the Division III playoffs.
At Miami, Dawson will replace Josh Gattis, who was fired last month after the Hurricanes went 5-7 in his only season at the school.
Miami’s offense failed to meet expectations in 2022. Part of that was injuries: Starting quarterback Tyler Van Dyke battled a shoulder injury, and the Hurricanes turned to Jake Garcia – who has since transferred – and Jacurri Brown for much of the season.
Miami scored 100 points in its first two games last fall, overpowering Bethune-Cookman and Southern Miss. The Hurricanes averaged only 18.3 points the rest of the way, and finished the year 5-0 in games where the defense allowed no more than 14 points – but 0-7 when opponents scored more than 14.
Miami was 86th nationally in total offense last season, averaging 367.1 yards per game, and 97th in scoring offense.
Dawson is the second coordinator Miami coach Mario Cristobal has hired this month. He also landed Lance Guidry, who was defensive coordinator at Marshall last season and had accepted the same position at Tulane. Guidry is replacing Kevin Steele, who left the Hurricanes for Alabama.