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Purdue hires offensive line coach

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Hazell finally completes coaching staff

Thursday, March 7, 2013 - 6:21 am

We can now say, with absolute certainty, that Purdue coach Darrell Hazell has finished hiring his nine-man assistant coaching staff.

Well, maybe.

In an era when coaches change jobs faster than conferences add teams, nothing is sure except that Jim Bridge is the Boilers new offensive line coach.

He replaces Jim Bollman, who had the job two months before moving to Michigan State last week.

Bridge, by the way, had been at Illinois for about the same period of time after moving over from North Carolina state.

Bridge is a veteran coach with big-time experience. He spent the last six seasons at North Carolina State where he coached the offensive line and tight ends.

Last year North Carolina State's offense averaged more than 420 yards a game and ranked No. 18 nationally in passing yards (310.1 a game). Bridge coached four All-Atlantic Coast Conference players, including tight end George Bryan (40 catches and 6 TDs in 2009), center Camden Wentz and guard R.J. Mattes.

Bridge also was the tight end coach at Boston College and Bowling Green and the offensive line coach at Eastern Michigan and The Citadel. In 2008 he was named one of the nation's top recruiters by, a national Internet recruiting service. In 21 years of coaching he's worked in 12 bowls.

“He brings a lot of passion and experience to Purdue,” Hazell said in a university release. “He's a phenomenal teacher. I know our players are going to love working with him."

Bridge is Hazell's second hire in a week. Earlier former NFL standout Rubin Carter joined the staff as the defensive line coach. The other new coaches are offensive coordinator John Shoop, defensive coordinator Greg Hudson, receivers coach Kevin Sherman, secondary coach Jon Heacock, running backs coach Jafar Williams, tight ends coach/recruiting coordinator Gerard Parker and linebackers coach Marcus Freeman.