The Boilermakers return to action after an off week with a home game against the Thundering Herd.
Gary Nord is in his fourth season as offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach. He was named to the position Dec. 1, 2008, and added an assistant head coach title to his job after the 2009 season.
Despite losing his No. 1 starter at quarterback, Rob Henry, to a season-ending knee injury a week prior to the start of the season, Nord directed a Purdue offense that averaged 376.8 yards and 26.9 points per game in 2011. The Boilermakers posted a balanced attack, averaging 181.6 yards rushing and 195.2 yards passing per game.
Nord's 2011 offense featured a rushing attacked that saw 16 different players finish with at least one carry and 13 different players record at least one reception. The 22 rushing touchdowns scored were the most for a Purdue squad since 2007.
Tasked with redesigning the Purdue offense on nearly a weekly basis due to injuries in 2010, Nord guided the Boilermakers to five straight games with over 200 yards rushing. The feat marked merely the third time in school history the Boilermakers had done so. Nord was forced to start four different quarterbacks, the first time in school history, but helped guide redshirt freshman Rob Henry to a team-high 547 yards rushing and 996 yards passing.
Nord mentored first-year starter Joey Elliott to 3,026 yards passing, 22 touchdowns and 3,294 yards of total offense, all second in the Big Ten Conference, and honorable mention all-conference honors in 2009.
Nord, who has more than 25 years of collegiate coaching experience, came to Purdue from Florida Atlantic, where he coached the quarterbacks from 2004 to 2008 and served as offensive coordinator from 2005 to 2008 under Howard Schnellenberger. In 2007, quarterback Rusty Smith set the Sun Belt Conference record with 3,688 passing yards and the Florida Atlantic record with 32 touchdown passes en route to being named conference Player of the Year. The Owls defeated Memphis in the 2007 New Orleans Bowl - their first-ever bowl appearance - behind Smith's five touchdowns.
From 2000 to 2003, Nord was head coach at Texas-El Paso, compiling a 14-34 record, after serving as offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach from 1997 to 1999. The 2000 Miners went 8-4 - their highest win total in 12 years - shared the Western Athletic Conference championship and played in the Humanitarian Bowl. Nord was named WAC Coach of the Year, was one of four runners-up for national Coach of the Year by American Football Monthly and was one of 10 semifinalists for Football News' national Coach of the Year Award.
With Nord as offensive coordinator, UTEP improved from 97th nationally in total offense in 1997 to 51st in 1998 and 43rd in 1999.
Nord coached the wide receivers at Pittsburgh in 1996 under Johnny Majors and was offensive coordinator at Oklahoma in 1995 under Schnellenberger.
From 1981 to 1994, Nord coached at Louisville under Schnellenberger, with stints as tight ends coach (1981-84), running backs coach (1985-86), wide receivers coach (1987-88) and offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach (1989-94). The 1990 Cardinals posted a 10-1-1 record and won the Fiesta Bowl 34-7 over Alabama.
Nord and current Purdue head coach Danny Hope worked together from 1985 to 1995.
Nord has coached numerous players who have gone on to the National Football League; among them, Mark Clayton, Ernest Givens and Browning Nagle.
A native of Louisville, Ky., Nord (born June 12, 1957) played tight end for the hometown Cardinals and earned a bachelor's degree in liberal arts in 1979. He and his wife, Kathy, have three children: Colleen, Nicole and Nate. Nate is a junior tight end at Louisville.