Yesterday (Dec 7), Lance Leipold and KU announced the addition of Jeff Grimes to the KU football coaching staff. Grimes is listed by KU as the Assistant Head Coach and Co-Offensive Coordinator with Jim Zebrowski as KU attempts to replace Andy Kotelnicki, who left for Penn State.
Grimes, 55, has an impressive resumé that includes stops at Baylor, BYU, LSU, Virginia Tech, Auburn, Colorado, and Arizona State. He has mostly been an offensive line coach and/or offensive coordinator throughout his career. He has twice been named a finalist for the Broyles Award, given to the nation’s top assistant coach, 2020 with BYU and again in 2021 while at Baylor.
Grimes has coached 17 offensive linemen who have gone on to play in the NFL as well as somehow turning Zach Wilson into the #2 overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft. Based on his accomplishments as provided by KU, Devin Neal, Jalon Daniels, et al should be very excited to have Grimes on staff, as Neal has a very real chance to break and possibly shatter most of the career rushing records at KU. Neal currently sits in 5th in career rush yards, trailing June Henley by just 835 yards. Neal is just 9 rush TDs behind Henley as well.
I’m not going to regurgitate the press release; seriously, go look at what his rushing offenses have done over the last 10 seasons at BYU, Baylor, and LSU.
Ok fine, here’s the important paragraph:
LSU’s offensive line helped pave the way for four consecutive 1,000-yard rushers in each of Grimes’ four seasons. In 49 games as LSU’s offensive line coach and run game coordinator, the Tigers had at least one running back reach the 100-yard rushing mark 34 times.
Add that in with what Grimes has done recently with Richard Reese at Baylor and Tyler Allgeier at BYU, and I think we have ourselves a pretty damn good coach.
As mentioned above, Grimes will be teaming up with QB Coach Jim Zebrowski as co-offensive coordinator. Zebrowski came to KU with Leipold in 2021, and is actually at his third stop with KU’s head coach, having served with him at Wisconsin-Whitewater from 2007-09 as well as Buffalo from 2017-20. Zebrowski has served as the QB coach at Buffalo, Minnesota, and Northern Illinois, and has worked under Leipold+Kotelnicki as the QB coach since 2017.
Grimes will likely have some additional wrinkles to add to KU’s offense, but it shouldn’t drastically change with Zebrowski around, and KU should be expected to have one of the most potent attacks in the country next season. To wit, Henry Greenstein over at KUSports.com notes:
Grimes calls his scheme a “Reliable Violent Offense,” or “RVO,” and told Dave Campbell’s Texas Football in 2021, “We’re an attacking, multiple formation offense that runs a few plays a lot of ways with as much misdirection as anyone in the country.”
If that description is any indication, he shouldn’t be too dramatic of a departure from Kotelnicki, who is noted nationwide for the array of motions and wide-ranging alignments he throws at opposing defenses.
While I am still disappointed about the loss of Kotelnicki, this appears to be a strong hire and I for one am looking forward to going 12-0 next year in the new-look
AAC Big East C-USA Big 12.