Syracuse has reportedly hired a new offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach from Virginia, ESPN’s Adam Rittenburg reported on Sunday morning.
The former Cavaliers’ offensive coordinator Robert Anae and quarterbacks coach Jason Beck are set to fill the same respective roles for the Orange in 2022. The pair worked together at BYU from 2013-15 and then at UVA from 2016-21.
The Orange fired offensive coordinator Sterlin Gilbert following a 5-7 campaign that saw them miss a bowl game. SU also fired tight ends coach Reno Ferri. Anae, who is set to fill the offensive coordinator role, could theoretically assume both positions for Syracuse — at Virginia, his official title was offensive coordinator, inside receivers and tight ends coach. Beck would fill Gilbert’s responsibilities as the quarterbacks coach.
This past fall, Virginia went 6-6 and was scheduled to play in the Fenway Bowl, though it had to withdraw due to positive COVID-19 tests within the Cavaliers program. Head coach Bronco Mendenhall stepped down following the conclusion of the regular season, and now the Cavaliers will lose both Anae and Beck to Syracuse.
Under the two in 2021, UVA passed for 392.6 yards per game behind Brennan Armstrong, a stat that led the Atlantic Coast Conference. But the duo had their most successful season in 2019 when Virginia advanced to the ACC Championship game behind dual-threat quarterback Bryce Perkins. The pair also coached current New Orleans Saints quarterback Taysom Hill at BYU.
At Syracuse, Anae and Beck will aim to develop another dual-threat quarterback in Garrett Shrader, who scored the second-most rushing touchdowns in the conference (14) last season.
Anae also has coaching experience at the University of Hawaii, where he started his career as an offensive graduate assistant in 1986. SU head coach Dino Babers was a graduate assistant at Hawaii — his alma mater — two years prior.
Beck played at BYU and then stayed as an offensive intern in 2007. He earned his first job coaching quarterbacks at Weber State in 2009, and has since progressed to BYU, Virginia and now Syracuse.
Virginia’s offensive production soared under Anae and Beck since 2016, particularly with improvements to the passing game. Syracuse struggled to successfully throw the ball in 2021, ranking last in the ACC with just 153 yards per game on average.
In addition to the hirings of Anae and Beck, Syracuse has also hired special teams coordinator Bob Ligashesky after it didn’t have a designated coordinator in 2021. Ligashesky comes to SU with 12 years of NFL experience and a Super Bowl ring with the Pittsburgh Steelers.