Kliff Kingsbury’s work with Kyler Murray is a big reason Lincoln Riley hired him

Kliff Kingsbury’s work with Kyler Murray is a big reason Lincoln Riley hired him

Former Arizona Cardinals head coach Kliff Kingsbury is expected to join Lincoln Riley at USC and work with the team’s quarterbacks.

Kliff Kingsbury, who was part of the organization that drafted former Heisman winner Kyler Murray at No. 1 overall, now will coach another potential No. 1 pick and Heisman Trophy Winner in Caleb Williams.

Both quarterbacks are Lincoln Riley quarterbacks, but in many ways the presence of Kyler Murray looms large in this story.

Kingsbury’s coaching career began at the University of Houston as an offensive quality control coach in 2008 under Kevin Sumlin. He coached four seasons there, rising to the level of offensive coordinator/quarterback coach in his final two seasons (2010-2011). He built a reputation as a quarterback guru during his time there.

He coached NFL quarterback Case Keenum at Houston, where he set what still stands as the NCAA’s all-time records for career passing yards (19,217) and passing touchdowns (155). Kingsbury then spent one season (2012) at Texas A&M in 2012 as the Aggies’ offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach. His quarterback that season, Johnny Manziel, won the Heisman Trophy.

Kliff coached another first-round NFL draft pick (2018), Baker Mayfield, in his first season as Texas Tech’s head coach in 2013. He then coached two-time NFL MVP and Super Bowl champion Patrick Mahomes from 2014-2016 with the Red Raiders.

Kingsbury obviously knows how to coach quarterbacks, and that’s certainly a central reason why Lincoln Riley hired him. Among the quarterbacks Kingsbury has coached, however, Kyler Murray might stand out the most.

Let’s remember that new USC commit Duce Robinson — like Murray — is a football and baseball prospect. One can be sure that Robinson and Kingsbury are going to have some conversations about how to handle that tension point and its complications.

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How Kingsbury coached Murray with the Cardinals will be a natural reference point for both Caleb Williams and Malachi Nelson as they try to soak up knowledge and develop as quarterbacks. How Kliff succeeded — and how he failed — will give Caleb and Malachi more information on how to progress as quarterbacks with designs on NFL success.

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Story originally appeared on Trojans Wire