STARKVILLE, Miss. (WTVA/MSU Athletics) – Mississippi State head football coach Joe Moorhead announced Tuesday the hiring of Terry Richardson as the program’s new assistant head coach and running backs coach.
Richardson, who boasts nearly 20 years of coaching experience, comes to Starkville after two seasons as the assistant head coach and running backs coach at Connecticut, a place where he and Moorhead worked together from 2009-10.
“Terry has coached running backs for nearly 20 years at both the college and NFL levels,” Moorhead said. “He has a firm grasp of our offense and will maximize the potential we have in our running backs room. Having played and coached in the NFL, he understands what it takes to develop players for the next level. Terry is also a dynamic recruiter with proven experience in the South, especially in the state of Florida. We are excited to welcome someone of Terry’s caliber to the Mississippi State family.”
Richardson worked one season as running backs coach at the University of Maryland in 2015 after spending the previous two seasons (2013-14) in the same role with the Jacksonville Jaguars. Prior to his two seasons with the Jaguars, he served as the University of Miami’s running backs coach and recruiting coordinator for the state of Florida from 2011-12.
“This is a great opportunity to work with great people at an outstanding university in the best conference in America,” Richardson said. “I am excited to reconnect with Coach Moorhead and work with him again. He is a tremendous football coach and an even better person. We will be well-versed on all five phases of running back play, and our group will maximize our opportunities to make a major impact in winning football games.”
Richardson’s first collegiate coaching position was at Connecticut, where he spent 12 seasons as running backs coach from 1999-2010. He began his coaching career at Northeast High School in Oakland Park, Florida, where he played high school football, as offensive coordinator and running backs in 1998.
During the 2018 season with the Huskies, Richardson led a unit that helped the offense average nearly 200 yards rushing per game and featured the program’s first 1,000-yard rusher at running back since 2011 in Kevin Mensah.
Mensah grounded out 1,045 yards and six touchdowns and teamed with quarterback David Pindell, who rushed for 1,139 yards and 10 scores, to make Connecticut one of only five programs in the FBS with a pair of 1,000-yard rushers in 2018.
During Richardson’s one season at Maryland in 2015, the Terrapins ranked third in the Big Ten in rushing yards per game (200.7) and tied for the league lead in 300-yard rushing games (3). The Terps also ranked second in the conference and 12th in the country in yards per carry (5.5). The running backs group was led by senior Brandon Ross, who totaled 958 rushing yards, 10 touchdowns and led the Big Ten in yards per rush (6.4).
Under Richardson’s leadership, the Jaguars finished sixth in the NFL in 2014 in yards per carry (4.5). In 2013, Richardson’s unit featured veteran Maurice Jones-Drew (803 yards), first-year pro Jordan Todman (256 yards) and 2013 fifth-round draft pick Denard Robinson (66 yards).
Under Richardson’s direction at Miami, Duke Johnson and Lamar Miller registered two of the best seasons in the school’s history by a running back. Johnson earned Freshman All-America honors in 2012 after rushing for a school freshman-record 947 yards and 10 touchdowns. He also earned Walter Camp All-America honors as a kick returner and was named the 2012 ACC Rookie of the Year.
In 2011, Miller finished with 1,272 rushing yards, the third-most in school history behind Willis McGahee (1,753) and Edgerrin James (1,416). Miller became only the eighth player in school history to top the 1,000-yard rushing barrier in a season and turned in seven games with 100 or more rushing yards.
During his first stint at Connecticut, Richardson coached Todman who was named the 2010 BIG EAST Offensive Player of the Year after he ranked second nationally in rushing yards per game (141.3). He also earned second-team All-America honors from the Walter Camp Foundation. The Huskies ranked 35th in the nation in 2010 in rushing yards per game (174.7) and Richardson was a nominee for the 2010 Broyles Award, given to the nation’s top college football assistant coaches.
In 2009, Richardson worked with a pair of 1,000-yard rushers in Todman (1,188) and All-BIG EAST second-team selection Andre Dixon (1,093). The Huskies were one of three FBS programs with a pair of 1,000-yard rushers.
The 2008 season saw running back Donald Brown become the nation’s leading rusher with 2,083 yards. Brown was named the BIG EAST Offensive Player of the Year and a first-team All-American by Sporting News. He became the school’s first NFL first-round draft pick in 2009 as he was selected by the Indianapolis Colts.
Richardson is a 1994 graduate of Syracuse where he was a four-year letterman at running back and wore number 44, a coveted jersey awarded to only exceptional Orange rushers, including Jim Brown and 1961 Heisman Trophy winner Ernie Davis. A native of Broward (Fla.) County, Richardson was Syracuse's leading rusher as a senior in 1993 and played in the Blue-Gray All-Star Game following his senior season. He guided the Orange to three bowl berths during his career, the 1990 Aloha Bowl, 1992 Hall of Fame Bowl and 1993 Fiesta Bowl. Syracuse won all three games.
After his playing days, Richardson signed a free agent contract with the Cincinnati Bengals in 1994 and also spent time with the Philadelphia Eagles (1995), Kansas City Chiefs (1996) and Pittsburgh Steelers (1996-97).
2019-present: Mississippi State (Assistant Head Coach/Running Backs)
2017-18: Connecticut (Assistant Head Coach/Running backs)
2015: Maryland (Running Backs)
2013-14: Jacksonville Jaguars (Running Backs)
2011-12: Miami (Fla.) (Running Backs)
1999-2010: Connecticut (Running Backs)
Bowl Games as a Coach
2011 Fiesta Bowl (Connecticut)
2010 PapaJohns.com Bowl (Connecticut)
2009 International Bowl (Connecticut)
2007 Meineke Car Care Bowl (Connecticut)
2004 Motor City Bowl (Connecticut)
The Terry Richardson File
Birthdate: Oct. 8, 1971
Hometown: Fort Lauderdale, Fla.
Education: Syracuse, 1994 (B.S., Political Science)
Children: Terrance, Sheenai, Kayla, Tierra