Wisconsin announced the hiring of Utah State assistant athletic director Jason Thomas as director of football operations Wednesday, filling a position that had been vacant since April when Zach Nyborg left for BYU.
Thomas is a 2005 graduate of Utah State, Andersen's last head-coaching stop, and worked in the Aggies' athletic department for the last eight years. In 2009, he was promoted to assistant athletic director. Andersen coached at Utah State from 2009-12.
The full release from UW:
MADISON, Wis. – Wisconsin head coach Gary Andersen announced on Wednesday the hiring of Jason Thomas as the Badgers’ director of football operations. Thomas is a 2005 graduate of Utah State and worked in the Aggies’ athletic department for the past eight years.
“Jason is perfect for this position,” Andersen said. “We worked together during my four years at Utah State and he was instrumental in the success we had there, both on and off the field. He brings a lot of experience in athletic administration, which will serve him well. Having worked with him closely, I know he will be a good fit with the young men on our team.”
Thomas has worked in the Utah State Student-Athlete Academic Services department for the past six years. Most recently, he held the position of Assistant Athletics Director and was a member of the athletics department senior staff. He has been the academic counselor for the football team for six seasons, including all four of Andersen’s years with the Aggies. In addition, in his role as Assistant Athletics Director, Thomas worked with the Assistant AD of Football Operations in game day management and travel operations.
Working in Academic Services, Thomas was responsible for initial and continuing student-athlete eligibility, served as study hall program coordinator and supervised the graduate intern program to develop young professionals. In addition to football, Thomas worked with the women’s basketball, men’s and women’s track and field and men’s and women’s tennis programs.
Utah State’s football team ranked in a tie for fourth among FBS teams in the recently-release NCAA Academic Progress Rate with a score of 988. That ranked one spot behind Wisconsin, who was third with an APR of 989. The only two schools above UW and Utah State are Duke (992) and Northwestern (991).