Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Wells Brothers Coach Together

Matt Wells                      Luke Wells

Two football coaches, whose names will be familiar to Sallisaw High School (SHS) football fans, will be at work Saturday and may be seen on Facebook football.

Matt Wells, a 1992 SHS graduate and football player, is now head coach for the Utah State University (USU) Aggies in Logan, Utah, his alma mater.

His brother, Luke Wells, a 1997 SHS graduate and football player, is an assistant coach at the same university.

They are the sons of Dr. Jim and Suzi Wells of Sallisaw.

The brothers will be coaching the Aggies at 6:30 p.m. Saturday when they play the San Jose Spartans in San Jose, Calif. The game may be seen on Facebook, said Dr. Wells.

Jim Wells said the game can viewed after downloading the app, and can also be sent to your television. 

“We’ve watched a couple games and they looked good on the TV,” he said.

Matt Wells is entering his fifth season as USU’s head coach, and is determined to lead the Aggies back into a bowl game and into the upper echelon of the Mountain West after a disappointing 2016 season.

Wells, the sixth-longest tenured coach in 120 seasons of Aggie football, holds a 28-25 record in his first four seasons at USU, including a 19-13 Mountain West record. Those 28 wins are the second-most by a USU coach in his first four seasons and the fifth-most in school history, while his 52.8 winning percentage ranks seventh all-time.

USU has also recorded three wins against top-25 opponents during Wells’ first four years as head coach, one more than the program won in its previous 115 seasons.

During his six years at Utah State, which includes two years as an assistant, Wells has been part of a program that played in a school-record five-straight bowl games. Wells is the first head coach in program history to lead the Aggies to three bowl games and the only head coach with multiple bowl wins.

Matt Wells and his wife, Jen, have two daughters, Jadyn, age 13, and Ella, age 10, and a son, Wyatt, age 7.

Luke Wells is in his fifth season as an assistant coach and recruiting coordinator at USU. This season, Wells coaches the inside receivers and tight ends after serving as the co-offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach in 2016, and the co-offensive coordinator and tight ends coach from 2013-15.

In his first four years at Utah State, the Aggies have played in three bowl games and notched bowl wins against No. 24 Northern Illinois (21-14) in the 2013 San Diego County Credit Union Poinsettia Bowl and against UTEP (21-6) in the 2014 Gildan New Mexico Bowl.

As co-offensive coordinator in 2016, Wells helped Utah State’s offense record its eighth-straight 2,000-yard rushing season. During the 2013 season, Wells was part of an Aggie offense that set school records for pass completions (297), total offensive plays (1,073), touchdown passes (30) and first downs (310), while its 445 points scored and 481 pass attempts both rank second all-time. Furthermore, USU’s 56 total touchdowns rank third all-time and its 31.7 points per game average ranks fifth all-time in school history.

Several USU football players mentored by Wells have gone on to play for NFL teams.

Luke Wells and his wife, Coby, have a son, Walker, age 9, and a daughter, Kinsley, age 7.

Dr. Wells said he and his wife have journeyed to see several of the games coached by his sons and they plan on going to more.

“We’re going out to Boise State and New Mexico State,” Wells said.

Asked if watching his sons coach was exciting, Dr. Wells was definite.

“Oh yes!” he said.

Sally Maxwell, Senior News Director

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