Carlos Osorio/AP
By Thayer Evans
December 22, 2014

Bowling Green co-offensive coordinators Sterlin Gilbert and Matt Mattox will join new Tulsa head coach Philip Montgomery's staff, a source told

Tulsa hired Montgomery on Dec. 11 to replace Bill Blankenship after Blankenship went 24-27 in four seasons, including 5-19 in the past two years. Montgomery has been Baylor's offensive coordinator for the past two seasons and was the co-offensive coordinator and backfield coach from 2008-12.

The Falcons posted an 8-6 record this season in Dino Babers first year at the helm. Bowling Green reached the Mid-American Conference championship game and beat South Alabama in the Camellia Bowl on Saturday despite losing quarterback Matt Johnson, one of top players in the MAC, to a season-ending hip injury in its opener.  Backup James Knapke stepped in for Johnson to throw for 3,173 yards with 15 touchdowns and 12 interceptions.

Johnson, a junior, should be back under center next season, along with top running backs Travis Greene and Fred Coppet (321 combined carries for 1,713 yards and 18 touchdowns this season) and freshman sensation Roger Lewis (73 catches for 1,093 yards and seven touchdowns).

Babers, a four-year assistant under Art Briles at Baylor before coaching Eastern Illinois from 2011-13, brought a similar up-tempo spread offense to Briles with him to Bowling Green when he took the head coaching job at the end of last season. His offense helped turn quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo into a second-round NFL draft pick, and expectations were high this year for what Babers could do with a quarterback like Johnson, who threw for 3,467 yards and 25 touchdowns with seven interceptions last season. Johnson's injury disrupted plans for this year, though the Falcons still reached the MAC title game for the second straight season, but he should be poised for a stellar campaign next year.

Gilbert joined Babers' staff as offensive coordinator at Eastern Illinois after serving as the offensive coordinator and quarterback coach at Temple (Texas) High. He began coaching at the college level in 2005 as a graduate assistant at Houston, assisting Montgomery, who was the Cougars' backfield coach at the time. Mattox coached the offensive line at Eastern Illinois for a year before moving with Babers to Bowling Green. He also got his start at the college level as a Houston graduate assistant in '05 after playing under Briles at Houston for two years.

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