MINNEAPOLIS (AP) -- University of Minnesota offensive coordinator Steve Loney is returning to Iowa State to become offensive coordinator and offensive line coach.
Golden Gophers quarterbacks coach Tony Petersen is a prime candidate to replace Loney. He took over play-calling duties for the 1999 season, and coach Glen Mason emphasized that the Gophers would not alter their offensive scheme.
Loney, who resigned Thursday, is returning to Ames, Iowa, where his family lives. He denied he was leaving because his play-calling duties were transferred to Petersen.
''In fact, that was mostly my idea to have Tony call the plays,'' Loney said. ''Coach Mason and I sat down before the season and both decided that was the best thing to do because the quarterbacks coach has the best vision of the big picture because he's looking at the game as the quarterback would.''
Loney said delegating the play-calling also made it easier for him to coach the Gophers centers and guards on game day.
''But, listen, the game plan was mine every week,'' Loney said.
The 1999 offense set school records for yards in a season (4,922) and points in a season (368) during the modern era (post 1945).
Since early last season, Loney had expressed a desire to reunite with his family. Loney, fearing the Iowa State coaching staff would be fired, left after the 1997 season for Minnesota.
When Iowa State offensive coordinator Pete Hoener was hired as running backs coach at Texas A&M last week, Loney jumped at the offer to return as the Cyclones offensive coordinator and offensive line coach.
Loney and his wife, Terri, have three children, Matt, 22, Katie, 20, and Kylan, 17. Matt and Katie attend Iowa State. Kylan is a Division I college basketball prospect who is considering the Iowa State women's team.
Petersen was a record-breaking quarterback at Marshall in the late 1980s, and a free agent signee of the Minnesota Vikings in 1989.
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