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QB coach Gdowski now in charge of offense

Associated Press

LAS CRUCES, N.M. -- New Mexico State has promoted quarterbacks coach Gerry Gdowski to offensive coordinator, replacing Barney Cotton, who joined the football staff at Nebraska on Monday.

Gdowski, who played for Nebraska, will retain his quarterbacks-coaching job while also taking on offensive coordinating. He has been with coach Tony Samuel's staff six seasons.

``I expect him to do a great job,'' Samuel said in a statement Monday. ``He has had major input on everything we do, and he's worked very closely with Coach Cotton over the years.''

Samuel also announced Monday the appointment of Kevin Lightner, another former Nebraska player and Western Kentucky assistant coach, as offensive line coach, replacing Cotton, as well.

Under Cotton and Gdowski, New Mexico State ranked 14th nationally in rushing offense, 23rd in total offense and 13th in passing efficiency in 2002. Aggie quarterbacks threw only six interceptions all season, third fewest in the nation.

Paul Dombrowski broke the school record for most rushing yards in a season by an Aggie quarterback and was named second team all-Sun Belt Conference and was picked as the Sun Belt Conference Freshman of the Year.

Gdowski came to NMSU in 1997 after serving as offensive coordinator at South Dakota State. He is a native of Fremont, Nebraska, and was a 1990 graduate of the University of Nebraska, where he was a team captain and starting quarterback.

At Nebraska, he set school records for most touchdowns in a game (six against Iowa State in 1989) and in a season (32 that same year). He also had the school's best passing efficiency in a season for that year and was a first team all-Big Eight Conference pick.

Lightner served as co-Offensive Coordinator and offensive line coach at Western Kentucky the past two seasons. He is a 1987 graduate of Nebraska, where he earned first-team all-Big Eight honors as an offensive tackle in 1987. He played for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 1988, the Hamilton Tiger Cats of the Canadian Football League in 1990 and for the Montreal Machine in the World League of American Football during 1991-92.

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