TAMPA, DEC. 14, 2022 – University of South Florida Head Coach Alex Golesh has named former Iowa State assistant Joel Gordon as the Bulls’ passing game coordinator/quarterbacks coach.
Gordon comes to USF after having served as the Iowa State passing game coordinator since 2019 coaching Cyclone quarterbacks for five of his seven seasons as part of Matt Campbell’s ISU staff.
Gordon worked alongside Golesh for four seasons at Iowa State (2016-19), helping the Cyclones to a turn-around from a 3-9 season before their arrival to a run of five-straight bowl games and a 9-3, Fiesta Bowl season in 2020.
“Joel and I worked closely for four seasons at Iowa State and I saw firsthand his abilities as a coach and recruiter as we were part of a tremendous turnaround and success with the Cyclone program,” Golesh said. “He did an outstanding job developing Brock Purdy into an All-Big 12 Player at ISU, and I know he will have a great impact on our quarterbacks and program at USF. I am humbled that Joel has made the decision to join our staff and bring his wonderful family to the Bay.”
Gordon helped to foster incredible improvement during his time in Ames as the Cyclones annually appeared in the national rankings. He played a huge role in mentoring four-time All-Big 12 performer Brock Purdy into the best quarterback in Iowa State history. In his four seasons, Purdy set or tied 32 school records while establishing himself as an elite quarterback on the national level. Purdy was selected All-Big 12 First Team at quarterback in 2020 and 2021, becoming ISU’s first signal-caller to earn first-team all-league honors since 1981. Selected in the 2022 NFL Draft, he started in Week 14 of his rookie season for the San Francisco 49ers and led the team to a win with 185 yards and two touchdowns passing.
Since 2019, ISU produced three of the most prolific offenses in the history of Cyclone football. ISU set school records for total offense (444.3 ypg), touchdowns (53), points (418) and yards per play (6.45) and logged the third-best scoring offense (32.2 ppg) in school history in 2019, and followed that up with the second-best scoring offense (32.9 ppg) and third-best total offense (436.3 ypg) totals in Cyclone history in 2020. In 2021, the Cyclones recorded the fourth-best scoring average (31.3 ppg) and the fifth-best total offense (424.5 ypg), respectively, in the history of the program.
In 2022, in his first season as starting quarterback Hunter Dekkers completed 66 percent of his passes for 3,044 yards and 19 touchdowns, finishing second in the Big 12 in passing yards and completion percentage and third in touchdown passes while leading the conference with 302 completions.
During the historic 2020 season, ISU finished the regular season in first place in the Big 12 standings, made the Big 12 Championship game and qualified for a New Year’s Six bowl for the first time in school history. The Cyclones capped off the season with a 34-17 win over Oregon in the PlayStation Fiesta Bowl.
Gordon started as an offensive analyst for the Cyclones (2016-17). He was hired as offensive coordinator at Division III Ferrum College (Va.) in January of 2016 but left four months later when Campbell asked him to assist with the Iowa State offense.
A former college quarterback, Gordon spent five seasons at his alma mater Shepherd (W.V.) University (2011-15), helping the team to three league titles as quarterbacks and wide receivers coach. For three seasons, Gordon served as offensive coordinator at Emory & Henry (2008-10), a Division III school in Virginia. His first tenure at Shepherd was from 2005-07, helping the team to three conference championships as quarterbacks and wide receivers coach.
A native of Waynesboro, Va., Gordon was a four-year starting quarterback and three-time team captain at Shepherd from 1999-2002, earning all-conference honors. He graduated with career records in passing yards (7,236), completions (522), total offense (7,677) and touchdown passes (66).
He earned his bachelor’s degree (2003) and master’s degree from Shepherd (2013) and was elected to the Shepherd University Hall of Fame.
He and his wife, Becca, have a daughter, Savanna.