REPORT: Texas nabs OC Sterlin Gilbert

Sterlin Gilbert. (Tulsa athletics)
Sterlin Gilbert. (Tulsa athletics)

After having problems scoring in each of his first two seasons in Austin, coach Charlie Strong decided to make a change.

Strong hired Tulsa Co-Oc Sterlin Gilbert today, per multiple reports (OB’s, 247, and ESPN) , Inside Texas confirms. It’s also understood that Matt Mattox could follow Gilbert to Austin. Here’s our introspective from Tuesday from Justin Wells:


Gibby played at Angelo State, and moved up the coaching tree rather quickly. That’s the Art Briles tree.

He started at Springtown HS, then went to UofH under Briles. He made a brief stop at Abilene Cooper – where he was once recognized as an up-and-comer in Texas Monthly.

After another stop at San Angelo Lakeview (alma mater), he took over at Temple HS. Then he got his shot.

He made his mark at Eastern Illinois, helping mentor New England QB Jimmy Garoppolo. Gilbert led FCS in scoring and total offense and was named the FCS Coordinator of the Year by Football Scoop in 2013. He followed Babers to Bowling Green in 2014, where he helped the Falcons put up an 8-6 record, while calling plays.

He took the Co-OC spot at Tulsa, following friend and Briles-understudy Phillip Montgomery in 2015.


He uses the Baylor offense, where almost everything is based off the run. Strong will like that.

Most plays are run calls, with a passing play/routes attached. The tackle pulls, and you see a curl, slant, or hitch by the receivers. Everyone in this concept does this, especially OU.

Gilbert loves to chuck it, but also understands the importance of establishing the run.

From Ian Boyd:

Sterlin Gilbert, former Co-OC at Tulsa (QBs and WRs)

Gilbert got his start as a Texas HS coach and did work at Temple, San Angelo Lake View, and Abilene Cooper for those who are HS football enthusiasts. His college career has consisted of him coaching with and following around guys from the Art Briles coaching tree (Dino Babers for three years and now Phillip Montgomery) and running Briles’ “veer and shoot” offense.

That started at Eastern Illinois with Babers, where Gilbert coached Jimmy Garappolo, who may be the most successful pro QB to have come from the Briles system.

His Tulsa team is currently 5-5, which will see him disqualified by some hoopleheads, but Gilbert’s offense has scored a lot of points this year in only year one in a system rich with option reads and option routes.

Like Cumbie’s Air Raid, this system requires a real passing QB, which means that unless Heard is up for making a leap that Texas would probably need a JUCO or to start Buechele. This system also puts more of a premium on arm strength than the Cumbie Air Raid because the wide splits require a QB that can throw over greater distances.

The run game attached to this system is more of a gap-oriented approach that would jive well with Vahe and Williams’ talent.

Unlike Cumbie, Gilbert has not worked as an OC apart from a head coach that also knows the system of offense being run.