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Drew Thatcher leaves Army football coaching staff

Drew Thatcher, Army’s 2023 offensive coordinator, has left the program.

Black Knight Nation has confirmed Thatcher’s departure after one season. No word on whether Thatcher has landed another coaching position.

“We did offer coach Thatcher an opportunity to stay on the staff and be a position coach,” Army coach Jeff Monken said during his Thursday Zoom call. “He chose not to do that. He’s left the staff. We wish him well.”

Thatcher brought his gun option from Division II Nebraska-Kearney as Army sought a new look after running the under-center flexbone as its base offense in Jeff Monken’s first nine seasons. The offense was viewed as an alternative to newer cut-blocking rules and a hopeful scoreboard spark in service-academy games against Navy and Air Force.

The gun offense started to fizzle after three games of 2023 season. Army went 159 minutes without scoring including back-to-back shutout losses to Troy and LSU.

Monken moved to quarterbacks coach Cody Worley as the play caller in a win over Coastal Carolina in late November. Thatcher returned to calling plays against Navy as the Black Knights captured the Commander in Chief’s trophy. Ironically, Army defeated both Navy and Air Force predominantly operating out of the shotgun but only scored a total of three offensive touchdowns.

But, Monken permanently made the move to Worley as full-time offensive coordinator in January with an aim of bringing back the under-center option on a more regular basis. Thatcher was demoted to H-backs, a position that was used in the gun option. He was out on the recruiting trail in mid-January.

Thatcher was given one season, essentially 11 games, to make the gun option work without some key offensive talents (Isaiah Alston, Tyrell Robinson) for part of 2023. Unfortunately, the production wasn’t what expected.

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