(Editor's note: Montana State University media release)
BOZEMAN - Adam Pilapil, a former Wyoming Cowboy linebacker and quality control coach who spent the 2020 season at Kansas State, has joined the Montana State football coaching staff as assistant defensive line coach, Bobcat head coach Brent Vigen announced Thursday.
A Torrance, California, product, Pilapil played linebacker for Wyoming from 2015-18. He was in on 69 tackles for the Cowboys, including 31 during his junior season when the Pokes finished 8-5 after a Famous Idaho Potato Bowl win. UW led the nation in takeaways and finished ninth in scoring defense, 13th in pass defense and 23rd in total defense during that campaign.
During his senior season, Wyoming finished 19th nationally in total defense, 25th in rushing defense, 28th in scoring defense and 32nd in pass defense. He logged 25 tackles that season, including a career-best nine against Wofford.
Vigen said Pilapil brings experience in the team's current defensive system and enthusiasm to the Bobcats.
"I'm excited to bring Adam on board as our new assistant defensive line coach," MSU's first-year head coach said. "He brings a great deal of experience as a player in this system, as well as in a quality control role and as a graduate assistant. He brings a tremendous level of energy that will impact our guys on the field as well as in the recruiting process."
Pilapil said his background with Vigen allows him the feeling of familiarity in a new role.
"I'm really excited to be working for somebody that I absolutely 100 percent believe in and who knows me really well from my playing days and from working together for a year on the same staff," Pilapil said of Vigen. "I believe in everything Coach Vigen is doing, in what he's going to do here, and in what has already been built here. We're excited to be here and to get going, and excited for the (players) to get going, too, because they're itching to play."
A redshirt during the 2014 season at Wyoming, Pilapil earned his bachelor's degree in communications in 2018 and spent 2019 as a quality control assistant for the Cowboys. In 2020 he became a graduate assistant at Kansas State, where he worked with the linebackers. The Wildcats finished 36th in the FBS in tackles-for-loss with 6.8 per game last fall.
"This system, the style of defense we're going to play here, is something that means a lot to me," Pilapil said. "I've seen this defense played at the highest level and played really, really well, so I'm excited to teach these guys that and see how good we can be. I'm excited to be working with really great coaches here, Coach (Freddie) Banks and Coach Howe, guys who know the system well, along with Coach (Kyle) Risinger and Coach (Bobby) Daly."
Pilapil earned Academic All-Mountain West Conference honors during all four of his varsity seasons at Wyoming and was inducted into the National Football Foundation's Hampshire Honor Society in 2019. He will work with Bobcat Defensive Run Game Coordinator/Defensive Line coach Shawn Howe at MSU.