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Purdue Football Coaching Changes: Jim Bridge Leaving

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Purdue is back on the market for an offensive line coach.

Eric Francis/Getty Images

It looks like the coaching search is not done as it was announced this morning that Purdue offensive line coach Jim Bridge is leaving for Duke:

This may not be a bad thing. The offensive line hasn't exactly been stellar during most of his tenure. It was a complete disaster with several returning starters in 2013, giving up 38 sacks and creating only 805 rushing yards, which was ahead of only Washington State nationally (and Washington State doesn't run on purpose). A revamped line with some new starters was better in 2014, giving up only 24 sacks and improving by more than 1,000 yards rushing, but it was hard to get much worse. this past year, with five returning starters, the line regressed with 30 sacks and 1,576 rushing yards. It looked dominant against Marshall, but that is about it.

The new offensive line coach will have to replace four-year starter Robert Kugler and two-year left tackle David Hedelin, but has three seniors in Cameron Cermin, Jordan Roos, and Jason King as well as the experienced Martesse Patterson and Kirk Barron.

This is a critical hire for Hazell. If he can get improved line play it is going to go a very long way towards a better record. For too long Purdue quarterbacks have been running for their lives and running backs have had no holes to go through. There are decent pieces there, but from these numbers it is pretty clear that Bridge sucked. this is not a great loss when the offensive line was one of the biggest underperforming units, especially since Kugler and Hedelin could both get drafted.