Texas State announced G.J. Kinne as the university’s newest head football coach. Above, Kinne speaks to Texas State fans in a social media video. Screenshot via Texas State Football Twitter
Texas State announces G.J. Kinne as new head football coach
Texas State wasted no time on its search for a new football coach as the Bobcats have hired University of Incarnate Word Head Coach G.J. Kinne to take over the program.
Kinne took over the Cardinals during the 2021 season and led the team to its third conference championship, a 10-1 overall record, and a national seed in the 2022 Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) playoffs.
“We are beyond excited to have G.J. lead the next era of Texas State football,” Texas State Athletic Director Don Coryell said. “We had a tremendous pool of candidates and interest in this role, and Coach Kinne stood out from them all as he is a proven mastermind behind a new-wave offense, a champion with an NFL background, and has a pedigree rooted in Texas. He is also a believer in a player-focused culture and full player development, which benefits our student-athletes as they fight and represent Texas State University on and off the field. We are poised for new heights at Texas State, and Coach Kinne rose to the top as the right leader for the Bobcats.”
Though Kinne will finish out his tenure with UIW as the Cardinals look to win the FCS National Championship, the former Tulsa standout is excited to start at San Marcos.
“It’s with great honor that I’m accepting the call to be next head football coach of the Texas State Bobcats,” Kinne said. “My family and I cannot wait to start the next chapter of our lives in San Marcos. Thank you to President [Dr. Kelly] Damphousse and Don Coryell for affording me an opportunity of a lifetime. I’m excited to hit the ground running and compete for championships. We are going to surround our players with excellent coaches, who down to their roots are teachers at heart. We are going to play fast, have relentless energy, and when the going gets tough, have the mental confidence to win tight games in the second half and represent the state of Texas.”
After one year with the University of Texas during his collegiate career, Kinne transferred to Tulsa where he became one of the most prolific passers in the program’s history with 9,472 yards passing and 81 touchdowns.
Bouncing around several pro teams in both the NFL and the Canadian Football League, Kinne started his coaching career at SMU under then-football coach Chad Morris before following him to the University of Arkansas during the 2018 season.
Kinne then made the jump to the NFL to become an offensive assistant with the Philadelphia Eagles, working on offensive special projects.
Kinne’s first major coaching position came in 2020 where he became the offensive coordinator for the University of Hawaii Rainbow Warriors where he helped lead them to a 5-4 overall record including a win over the University of Houston in the New Mexico Bowl.
Kinne then moved on from Hawaii to become the Co-Offensive Coordinator and Quarterbacks coach at the University of Central Florida where the Knights had another successful season going 9-4 with a bowl win over the University of Florida Gators.
Kinne received his first head coach position when he took over the departed Eric Morris to lead UIW.
With transfer quarterback Lindsey Scott Jr. at the helm of the offense, the Cardinals become the most prolific offense in the FCS with UIW capturing their third Southland Conference title in program history.
Texas State President Dr. Kelly Damphousse stated that during the hiring process, he wanted a coach that only had success but could also make connections throughout the Texas High School Football community.
“My goal was to hire someone with demonstrated leadership experience, success as a head coach, established relationships with Texas football coaches, and success with recruiting and developing players,” Damphousse said. “I sought a leader with a plan to capitalize on our location in the heart of the best high school football in the country, and an eagerness to take on the challenge of re-kindling the national championship success we have enjoyed in the past.”
Now Damphousse wants to make sure Kinne and his coaching staff have the ability to achieve goals the Bobcat football team want to reach by re-working the Bobcats infrastructure.
“It was also important that our next coach understood that my commitment to increasing institutional support for football is coupled with an expectation for success on field, including the minimum goal of quickly building a team that is bowl eligible,” Damphousse said. “After meeting with several candidates with a wide variety of experience this week, it became clear to me that Coach Kinne is right person to lead our football program forward. My job now is to ensure that he and his coaches have the infrastructure and financial resources they need to regularly compete for conference championships.”
Kinne takes over the program after former head coach Jake Spavital was fired following four seasons in San Marcos. Spavital finished his tenure with a 13-35 overall record. The Bobcats wrapped up the 2022 season by going 4-8.
Texas State will introduce Kinne as the 21st head coach in program history on Wednesday at a press conference at 2:30 p.m.