After the excruciating wait and see game with Lane Kiffin finally came to a conclusion Monday, LSU didn’t hesitate long, interviewing Pitt offensive coordinator Matt Canada the day after Kiffin to FAU was announced. The Tigers’ quick adjustment to the Pittsburgh OC has paid off, as LSU head coach Ed Orgeron moved swiftly to name Canada his new offensive coordinator.

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The specific terms of Canada’s LSU deal have yet to be released, however, Ross Delenger of The Advocate reports his deal will be for three years at over $1 million per season. The school is scheduled to announce the hire during a Wednesday afternoon press conference.

“We have a real opportunity under Coach Orgeron to propel LSU football to another level,” Canada said in a school-released statement. “The chance to put together a high-powered offense with the athletic ability available at LSU and the leadership of Coach ‘O’ is incredibly exciting. I’ve long-respected Coach Orgeron’s ability to recruit, lead and motivate. What he did as head coach at LSU under difficult circumstances was really impressive. I’m thrilled to be a part of the vision for the program.”

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So how did the Pitt coordinator land on LSU’s radar? His former Panther team finished second in the ACC (and 10th in the nation) in scoring this season after averaging 42.3 points per game in his first season in Pittsburgh. In 2015, Pitt’s offense was coordinated by current Georgia OC Jim Chaney and only scored 28.2 points per game.

Following his first season with Pitt, Canada was also a finalist for the Broyles Award honoring the nation’s top assistant coach after his offense scored more points than any team in school history.

Under Canada’s tutelage, several college quarterbacks have had tremendous success in his offensive system:

  • Current Pitt senior Nathan Peterman set career highs this season with 2,602 passing yards, 26 passing touchdowns, a 161.2 passer rating and had fewer interceptions than in 2015 (six this season, eight last season).
  • NC State’s Jacoby Brissett transferred to Raliegh after two seasons of marginal success at Florida. In his final two college seasons with Canada, Brissett threw for 5,268 yards, 43 touchdowns to 11 interceptions and completed 60 percent of his passes. Brissett was drafted in the third round of the 2016 NFL Draft.
  • During Canada’s only season at Northern Illinois, senior Chandler Harnish set career highs for passing yards (3,216) and touchdowns (28).
  • During Canada’s final two seasons at Indiana (2009-2010), Ben Chappell threw for 6,236 yards, 41 touchdowns and set career highs in completion percentages and passer rating.
  • In Canada’s first year of calling plays for the Hoosiers (2007), Kellen Lewis set career highs after completing 60 percent of his passes for 3,043 yards and threw 28 touchdowns to 10 interceptions.

Earlier this week, LSU lost a commitment from highly touted local quarterback prospect Lowell Narcisse, due in part to the uncertainty of the offensive coordinator position in Baton Rouge. Now with Canada running the offense at LSU, the Tigers can pitch one of the game’s elite play callers to recruits.

Whether it’s a pitch to a dual-threat guy like Narcisse, or a more traditional pocket passer like Myles Brennan, Canada is known for his willingness to adapt his system to the talent on hand – his 2011 Wisconsin offense led the league in both rushing and scoring. After scoring 11 touchdowns in his last two matchups (as OC of Pitt and NC State) against a more talented Clemson defense, as noted by FOX Sports’ Bruce Feldman, one of college football’s best offensive minds now resides at LSU.

So far, new head coach Ed Orgeron’s promise to build an elite coaching staff has come to fruition with two outstanding coordinators now locked up for next season. We’ll soon find out if all that bravado pays off on the field for the Tigers in 2017.