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Gary Andersen Talks Specialty, Importance of Aggie Nation

USU Coach Gary Andersen urges his team on as Utah State University defeatsToledo 41-15 as they play football in the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl Saturday, Dec. 15, 2012,in Boise, Idaho. (Deseret News)

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – Gary Andersen spends time emphasizing the importance of the history of Utah State Football with his players. A storied history he helped build.

“You need to understand the traditions of your school… it’s special to me here,” said Andersen in his weekly press conference leading up to Aggie’s game against San Diego State.

Andersen is back with the Aggies for the second time in his coaching career.

He coached the Aggies from 2009-2012 before taking jobs with Wisconsin, Oregon State and Utah, where he was a defensive assistant.

Andersen is replacing Matt Wells, who played a big part in carrying the Aggie tradition Andersen created through the 2018 season. Wells left for the head coaching position at Texas Tech.


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“We talk about the past, look into the future,” Andersen continued, “make sure the kids in the program understand it’s not about them… it’s far bigger than them as an individual…this place is about a university and a tradition.”

During his first four years with the Aggies, Andersen grew consistently more successful with each season as he built the program. His fourth and final season was the most successful when the team went 11-2, losing only to Wisconsin (2 point loss) and BYU (3 point loss). The team finished with a #16 AP ranking.

Andersen and the Aggies made it to the Idaho Potato Bowl twice, where they won once and lost once.

During the Wells years, the Aggies went to four bowls where they went 2-2.

Things look good for the Aggies as they begin conference play this season with a potential All-American linebacker in David Woodward and a quarterback in Jordan Love whose name was thrown around in early season Heisman talk.

The Aggies are 1-1 so far this season. They are heading to San Diego this weekend after a bye week to take on the Aztecs and begin their hunt for a conference championship.

“It’s Aggie nation,” concluded Andersen as he expressed the importance of the Utah State tradition.

If you want to stay in the know when it comes to Utah State Football and other Aggie Athletics check out The Scotsman podcast hosted by KSL Sports contributor and Aggie expert, Matt Glade.