Practices Will be in the Mornings and Open to the Public and Media, Spring Game Saturday, April 27 at 2 p.m.
Dave Christensen Announces New Coaching and Administrative Responsibilities for Wyoming Football Staff
Jamar Cain, Jason Gesser and Nick Danielson Join Cowboy Staff as Assistant Coaches
Saturday's Matchup Will Feature Two Bowl Teams From 2011
Saturday's Matchup Will Feature Two Bowl Teams From 2011
Head Coach Dave Christensen announces new coaching staff duties.
Jim Harding was named Co-Offensive Coordinator by head coach Dave Christensen in February of 2013, after serving as Running-Game Coordinator in 2012. He will also have sole responsibility for coaching the Cowboy offensive line in 2013 after sharing that duty with fellow UW assistant coach Pete Kaligis the past four seasons.
The Wyoming offense ranked second in the Mountain West Conference and 38th in the nation in passing offense in 2012, averaging 265.4 yards per game. In 2012, Harding coached First Team All-Mountain West center Nick Carlson. Carlson was named to the Rimington Trophy Watch List for the second time his senior season. The Rimington Trophy honors the nation's top center each season. Carlson was also named to the 2012 Rotary Lombardi Award Watch List, and was one of only 10 national finalists for the ARA Sportsmanship Award as a senior. Carlson (Tampa Bay Bucanneers) and senior offensive tackles Josh Leonard (Oakland Raiders) and Kyle Magnuson (Oakland Raiders) each were invited to NFL camps as free agents following their senior seasons.
The 2011 Cowboy offense ranked No. 11 in the nation in fewest sacks allowed, allowing only 12 sacks in 13 games. Three UW offensive linemen earned Mountain West All-Conference honors in 2011. Senior tackle Clayton Kirven and junior center Nick Carlson were named Second Team All-Mountain West. Sophomore offensive guard Tyler Strong earned Honorable Mention All-Conference recognition.
Harding joined the University of Wyoming coaching staff in December 2008. His first season at UW, he helped coach former Cowboy offensive tackle Ryan Otterson, who signed a free-agent contract with the San Diego Chargers following the 2010 NFL Draft. In the 2010 season, Harding helped coach sophomore Nick Carlson, who earned Honorable Mention All-Mountain West honors at center. Carlson was named to the Rimington Trophy Preseason Watch List in the summer of 2011. The Rimington Trophy honors the nation's top center each season.
The 2013 season will be Harding's eighth as a college coach. Three of his first seven seasons as a college assistant coach, Harding was part of programs that reached postseason play. Missouri participated in the 2003 Independence Bowl, losing to Arkansas, 27-14. Wyoming captured the 2009 New Mexico Bowl Championship over Fresno State, 35-28 in double overtime, and the Cowboys also participated in the 2011 Gildan New Mexico Bowl, losing to Temple by a score of 15-37.
When he was hired by Wyoming head coach Dave Christensen, Harding renewed a relationship he began with Christensen at the University of Toledo back in the late 1990s. Harding was an offensive tackle at Toledo from 1997-2000, while Christensen was the offensive coordinator and offensive line coach for the Rockets.
Harding enjoyed an outstanding college career for Toledo. He was a four-year starter, setting a school record with 46 consecutive starts. He was a First Team All-Conference selection as a senior in 2000 and was also elected a team captain that year. As a senior, he helped lead Toledo to a 10-1 record and a No. 25 ranking in the final Associated Press and USA Today/ESPN Coaches' polls. One of Toledo's 10 wins during the 2000 season was a season-opening road win at Penn State by a score of 24-6. The 2000 Toledo offense also set a school record for scoring offense, averaging 36.4 points per game.
At the conclusion of his senior season, Harding was named the co-recipient of the Jim Nicholson Award, which is presented each year to the Toledo player who contributes most toward the success of the team. The award is named for Toledo's first full-time football coach, Jim Nicholson, who coached the Rockets from 1930-35. Harding shared the 2000 award with teammate DeJuan Goulde, a senior defensive end.
Toledo won or shared three Mid-American Conference (MAC) divisional titles in the four seasons Harding played. The Rockets won the 1997 and 1998 MAC West Division and were co-champions of the MAC West in 2000. Over that four-year span, Toledo posted a record of 32-14 (.696), including single-season marks of 9-3 in 1997, 7-5 in 1998, 6-5 in 1999 and 10-1 in 2000. The Rockets' four-year conference record during that time was 24-7 (.774).
Following his college playing career, Harding signed a free-agent contract with the Miami Dolphins and went to camp with the Dolphins.
A year later, Harding began his coaching career as an offensive graduate assistant at the University of Missouri where Christensen was then the offensive coordinator. Harding served in that role for the 2002, 2003 and 2004 seasons.
From the fall of 2005 through the fall of 2008, he was a high school football coach for the Troy School District in Troy, Mich. He served as defensive coordinator for the 2006, 2007 and 2008 seasons, and was the head coach in 2008.
Harding completed his bachelor's degree in secondary education from Toledo in May 2001, and achieved a master's degree in career and technical education from Missouri in December 2004.
A native of Maumee, Ohio, Harding and his wife, Meredith, have two young sons, Colton and Jackson.
Harding will recruit the Midwest, including the states of Illinois, Indiana, Minnesota, Ohio and Wisconsin. He will also recruit the city of Chicago.