New Mexico St Utah St Football Gary Andersen 102012

In this October 2012 photo, Utah State head coach Gary Andersen (right) yells at his defense during a college football game against New Mexico State in Logan. Andersen, who was head coach at USU from 2009-12, was again hired to the same position ahead of the 2019 season.

Meet the new boss. Same as the old boss.

That would be Gary Andersen, the former Utah State head football coach who the university officially announced Sunday as its next head football coach.

Utah State football fans might feel like screaming like Roger Daltrey iconically did just before that classic The Who lyric — some, excited for the prospects of his former glory days; others, with memories of his departure and his short-lived tenures that followed at Wisconsin and Oregon State.

Either way, Andersen is back. He replaces Matt Wells, his successor and predecessor of six seasons, after Wells and several assistants were hired by Texas Tech on Nov. 29.

“Gary clearly knows football and the blueprint for success at Utah State. He is dedicated to the success of his student-athletes in the classroom, on the field of play and in life after football," university president Noelle Cockett said in a statement. "Gary's energy and enthusiasm will benefit the football program, athletics department and university, and as importantly, the Aggie fanbase across Cache Valley and beyond.”

Andersen previously led USU's football program from 2009-12. After two 4-8 seasons, the Aggies went 7-6 in 2011 and qualified for their first bowl game in 14 years.

In 2012, Andersen led the Aggies to an 11-2 record after a win in the Idaho Potato Bowl, the program's best season in 50 years, and a season-end national ranking of No. 16.

"This is a special place and we are excited to meet these young men and play a part in seeing them succeed," Andersen said in Sunday's statement. "We are grateful to reconnect with many great friends and supporters in Logan and want to thank (athletic director) John Hartwell and President Cockett for the opportunity."

Andersen was hired away from USU by Wisconsin, where he coached the Badgers for two seasons to a 20-7 record before abruptly leaving to take the head coaching job at Oregon State.

The Beavers were 7-23 in Andersen's two-plus seasons in Corvallis. He resigned midway through the 2017 season, tearing up the contract that would've paid him a $12 million buyout but, as The Oregonian reported, also frequently criticized his coaching staff in text messages and press conferences, frustrated by their "self promoting" ways and underperformance.

Eleven months ago, Andersen returned to the University of Utah — where he previously spent 11 years as an assistant coach — as the Utes made him associate head coach and defensive line coach for the 2018 season.

Now, he's going back to Logan.

"I am excited to see him back at Utah State. He is a great coach that knows how to get the best out of people," former USU and current Seattle Seahawks linebacker Bobby Wagner said in a statement. "He helped me get to where I'm at today. I can't wait to come back and see him."

Andersen will be introduced in a press conference at 11 a.m. Tuesday, Dec. 11, at Maverik Stadium.

Utah State finishes the 2018 season by facing North Texas in the New Mexico Bowl on Saturday, Dec. 15.

Contact Brett Hein at Follow him on Twitter @bhein3/@WeberHQ and at

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