TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Kenny Dillingham has been named Florida State’s offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach, head coach Mike Norvell announced Wednesday.
“I’m excited to announce the addition of Kenny Dillingham to the Florida State family as our new offensive coordinator,” Norvell said. “Kenny is one of the most innovative minds in football. He is going to bring a relentless work ethic and passion for the development of our student-athletes in every capacity. Kenny has a unique quality of youth and incredible experience which enhances the learning experience with our players and recruits. He is one of the best leaders that I have been around and will be a tremendous asset to our program on and off the field. We are honored to have him and his wife Bri joining us in Tallahassee.”
Dillingham comes to Tallahassee after serving as the offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach at Auburn in 2019, helping the Tigers to a 9-3 record and an invitation to the Outback Bowl. In his final game coordinating Auburn’s offense the Tigers scored 48 points in a win over No. 5 Alabama, the most points allowed by the Crimson Tide under head coach Nick Saban. The points total was the highest against any Alabama team since a five-overtime game in 2003 and the most allowed by the Crimson Tide in regulation since 1970.
Auburn ranked 15th in the country with an average of 1.33 sacks allowed per game and only threw six interceptions, the lowest total in the SEC and 17th-lowest in the country. The Tigers converted 90 percent of their red zone possessions, third-best in the SEC, and also ranked third in the conference with an average of 34.0 points per game. Quarterback Bo Nix broke the program’s freshman records for completions, passing yards and passing touchdowns. Nix, the first true freshman to start a season opener at quarterback for Auburn since 1946, was responsible for an average of 11.2 points per game to rank fifth in the SEC. JaTarvious Whitlow was sixth in the SEC with nine rushing touchdowns and Seth Williams’ eight receiving touchdowns were the conference’s eighth-highest total.
“I’m excited to be at one of the best programs in college football and back with one of the best offensive minds, Coach Norvell,” Dillingham said. “This is going to be a program built on playmakers. I’m fired up to be here and ready to get to work.”
Prior to his time coordinating the offense at Auburn, Dillingham worked with Norvell for five seasons. Dillingham was the offensive coordinator at Memphis in 2018 in addition to working with quarterbacks. In 2017 he also coached tight ends for the Tigers. After coaching in the high school ranks in Arizona for seven years, he joined Arizona State, where Norvell was offensive coordinator, for two seasons.
In 2018, Dillingham coordinated a Memphis offense that broke program records with 7,324 yards of total offense and 3,919 rushing yards. The rushing attack was the fourth-best in the nation, averaging 279.9 yards per game, and its 48 touchdowns on the ground was the second-highest total in the country. He helped produce the first season in Memphis history with two 1,000-yard rushers, led by Doak Walker Award finalist and unanimous All-American Darrell Henderson, who ranked second in the country with 1,909 yards, 22 touchdowns and an average of 8.92 yards per carry. Henderson’s single-season average was the highest with a minimum of 200 carries in records dating back to 2000 and helped him break the NCAA career record with an average of 8.22 yards per carry on 431 rushes. Running backs Henderson, Tony Pollard and Patrick Taylor combined for 5,328 all-purpose yards in 2018.
The Tigers ranked fourth in the country with an average of 523.1 yards per game and 7.12 yards per play while also ranking seventh with an average of 42.9 points per game. Quarterback Brady White directed the record-setting offense and passed for 3,296 yards with 25 touchdowns in his first season with the Tigers.
The 2017 team scored 45.5 points per game, the second-highest average in the country, and ranked fourth in the NCAA with 523.1 yards per game and 7.35 yards per play. Under Dillingham’s direction coaching quarterbacks and tight ends, the team passing efficiency rating of 160.15 was sixth in the nation and its passing offense of 335.0 yards per game ranked seventh. Quarterback Riley Ferguson ranked third in the country with 4,257 passing yards and with 38 passing touchdowns. Additionally, his passer rating of 161.2 was the seventh-highest in the nation and his 8.98 yards-per-attempt average was eighth.
In his first year at Memphis, Dillingham worked with the quarterbacks as a graduate assistant. The 2016 Tigers ranked in the top-15 nationally in scoring offense, averaging 38.8 points per game, and passing offense at 304.4 yards per game. Ferguson passed for 3,698 yards and 32 touchdowns, breaking the program record that he would break again in 2017.
Dillingham first worked with Norvell at Arizona State, spending the 2014 and 2015 seasons as an offensive assistant. The 2014 offense gained 5,750 yards, 3,556 of those through the air, and ranked 13th in the nation with 34 touchdown passes.
From 2007-13, Dillingham worked on staff at Chaparral High School in Scottsdale, Arizona. He coordinated the No. 1 offense in the state of Arizona in 2013 as the Firebirds won 12 games and advanced to the Division II state championship game.
Dillingham graduated from Arizona State in 2012 with a bachelor’s degree in business/economics. He is married to the former Briana Plimpton.