Football: UConn names former Auburn OC Rhett Lashlee as offensive coordinator

From left to right: Athletic Director David Benedict, new hire Randy Edsall, university president Susan Herbst, and Chairman of the Board of Trustees Larry McHugh. Rhett Lashlee will serve as offensive coordinator and quarterback coach under Edsall going forward. (Photo courtesy of Ian Bethune/The UConn Blog) 

From left to right: Athletic Director David Benedict, new hire Randy Edsall, university president Susan Herbst, and Chairman of the Board of Trustees Larry McHugh. Rhett Lashlee will serve as offensive coordinator and quarterback coach under Edsall going forward. (Photo courtesy of Ian Bethune/The UConn Blog) 

Rhett Lashlee, who spent the past four seasons as the offensive coordinator at Auburn, will take over the same role at UConn under new head coach Randy Edsall. Edsall and the university announced the hire in a press release Wednesday.

“I’m excited to be joining Coach Edsall’s staff and help him get our program to where we, our fans and student-athletes want it to be,” said Lashlee. “Randy is a proven winner and has done it here at UConn before and I’m thrilled to be a part of his staff.”

Lashlee served under head coach Gus Malzahn the last four years at Auburn, overseeing an explosive unit that set a school record for total offense in 2014. He has been a finalist for the Broyles Award, presented to the nation’s top assistant coach, on two occasions. In 2013, he helped lead the Tigers to the SEC Championship and a BCS Championship Game berth.

At UConn, Lashlee has agreed to a three-year contract with a base salary of $350,000, down from a $600,000 salary at Auburn. He will also serve as the quarterback coach at UConn, under returning head coach Randy Edsall, who is leading the program once again after his stint as head coach from 1999-2010.

“I am thrilled to have Rhett join our staff as the offensive coordinator and quarterback coach,” Edsall said. “He is one of the brightest offensive minds in college football and I know that his experience around some of the highest-powered offenses and top players in the country is going to be an incredible benefit to our program.”

The hire is a significant coup for UConn athletic director David Benedict, who served as the Chief Operating Officer for the athletics department at Auburn before taking the UConn job last February. Such an accomplished coach from the SEC, one of the country’s premier conferences, should help inject new life into a UConn offense that scored just 16 points over its last four games last season. The Huskies had the sixth-worst offense in FBS play by total offensive yards.

Before taking the offensive coordinator job at Auburn, Lashlee served the same role at Arkansas State in 2012 and Samford in 2011. He served as a graduate assistant at Auburn before that, including for the 2010 season, when the Tigers won the BCS National Championship behind Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback Cam Newton.

“Rhett has been a valuable asset to our program, helping Auburn to a national championship as a graduate assistant and another national championship appearance in 2013,” Malzahn said. “Our offenses have achieved great success and he has been a big part of that. This is a great opportunity for Rhett to implement and run his own offense. I’ve known Rhett for two decades and he’s a man of great character and integrity and this is another step towards his goal to become a head coach.”


Tyler Keating is associate sports editor for The Daily Campus, covering football and men’s basketball. He can be reached via email at tyler.keating@uconn.edu. He tweets @tylerskeating.