As a former coach in the National Football League for 11 years, as well as an extensive tenure of 18 years as an assistant coach at the major college level, Carl Hargrave coached three seasons with the Arizona Cardinals, originally joining Head Coach Dennis Green’s staff as an Offensive Consultant in 2004. In 2005, Hargraves contributions helped the Cardinals’ finish the season with the 8th-ranked overall offense in the NFL, and the #1 passing offense (4,437 yards/277.3 yards per game) for the first time in team history. Prior to his tenure with the Cardinals, Hargrave was an assistant with the Minnesota Vikings from 1994-2001, and worked primarily with the running backs. In his eight seasons in Minnesota, the Vikings compiled a 77-51 record, made six playoff appearances, won three NFC Central titles, and twice advanced to the NFC Championship Game.
During Hargrave’sstint with the Vikings, the 1998 team set the NFL scoring record with 2,563 points, a record that stood for ten seasons until then Super Bowl Champion New England eclipsed that mark in 2008.Additionally, the Vikings offense set a league record for team rushing in 2000 with 2,565 yards which still exists today.
Hargrave coached in two Pro Bowls, where he tutored some of the great running backs in the NFL at that juncture. This list includes his own Minnesota Viking Robert Smith, Dallas Cowboy Hall-Of-Famer Emmitt Smith, Tampa Bay Buccaneer Mike Alstott, and Atlanta Falcon Jamal Anderson. Hargrave has been a vital component in the lives of numerous student athletes, having coached at the college level. With successful stints at Northwestern University, The University of Pittsburgh, The University of Houston and The University of Iowa, Hargrave balanced the delicate scales of athletic involvement with the priority of education.
“Football is a career, education is for life,” says Hargrave. One of the proudest moments in Hargrave’s career involved witnessing one of his college understudy’s, Andre Ware, win the Heisman Trophy while at the University of Houston in 1989. During Hargrave’s stretch with the Cougars, the school set 88 individual NCAA offensive records along with 36 team NCAA marks.