Kittley takes offensive coordinator position at Texas Tech

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Credit: WKU Athletics

Zach Kittley was introduced as WKU’s new offensive coordinator on Dec. 14, 2020 following the end of the regular season. Kittley most recently coached at Houston Baptist and Texas Tech. 

Wyatt Sparkman, Football reporter

Zach Kittley is returning to Lubbock.

WKU’s offensive coordinator accepted the same position at Texas Tech on Monday night, returning to the program that helped launch his career under new head coach Joey McGuire.

“My family and I are excited to return to Texas Tech and a place I love so much as the offensive coordinator,” Kittley said in the Texas Tech press release. “This is a dream come true for me personally, and I can’t thank Coach McGuire enough for the opportunity. I’m looking forward to meeting our players soon and immediately getting to work in building this offense into one of the nation’s elite units.”

Kittley worked under head coach Kliff Kingsbury from 2013-2017, moving from a student assistant to a graduate assistant and assistant quarterbacks coach at his alma mater.

His success as a part of the Red Raiders’ offense, which included working with future NFL MVP Patrick Mahomes, led to his hiring at Houston Baptist University where he worked with Bailey Zappe and Jerreth Sterns to create one of the most electric offenses in FCS competition.

WKU head coach Tyson Helton and his program took a flyer on Kittley and his air raid offense, bringing in the offensive guru along with Zappe, Jerreth and his brother Josh Sterns and wideout Ben Ratzlaff.

Kittley’s impact was felt immediately.

The Hilltoppers averaged just 290.3 yards of total offense in 2020. Those numbers paled in comparison to Kittley’s first year at the helm, transforming the middling offense to the most explosive in the nation, putting up the most yards per game (528.0) and the most yards through the air (436.5 yards per game) thanks to the air raid scheme.

Kittley’s offense has allowed Zappe to thrive as the transfer quarterback’s 56 touchdowns and 5,570 yards lead the country. 

It is uncertain at this time if Kittley will be coaching the offense during WKU’s bowl game against Appalachian State on Dec. 18.

If WKU fans have already seen the last of Kittley, his offensive know-how has left a permanent mark on the program’s record books and helped to build a season that the Hilltopper faithful will not soon forget.

Football reporter Wyatt Sparkman can be reached at [email protected] Follow him on Twitter @wyattsparkman3.