The University of Michigan State football announced on Saturday that Jonathan Smith, the 26th head coach of the Spartans, had agreed to join the team after leaving his alma mater, Oregon State.

The 44-year-old Smith, who is from Pasadena, California, played quarterback for Oregon State from 1997 to 2001. In his six seasons with the Beavers, he has a record of 34-35. $3 million is his buyout amount for this year, according to

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Who is Jonathan Smith?

American college football coach Jonathan Charles Smith was born in Pasadena, California, on January 18, 1979. He is the head coach of Oregon State University at the moment. Smith’s football career started while he was a four-year starter and multiple school record holder at Oregon State University, where he played quarterback from 1998 to 2001. Smith spent two seasons as a professional player in the Arena Football League after graduating from college.

Smith began his coaching career at Oregon State in 2003 as a graduate assistant. After that, he started working at a number of schools as an offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach, including Boise State (2012–2013), Montana (2010–2011), and Washington (2014–2017).

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Smith was named Oregon State’s head coach on November 29, 2017. He successfully rejuvenated the program after a difficult first season with a 2-10 record, as evidenced by a 7-6 record in 2021 and an outstanding 10-3 record in 2022.

He is well-known for his offensive prowess; his teams are celebrated for their high-scoring games, and he prefers the spread offense. He has also built a solid reputation as a recruiter, drawing some of the best high school athletes in the country to Oregon State.

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Smith is distinguished by his youthful enthusiasm, drive, and accomplishments in creating a successful program at Oregon State. In the coming years, he could rank among the best coaches in the nation if he continues on this current course.