Jan. 4, 2005
Tallahassee, Fla. –
Florida State head football coach Bobby Bowden announced Tuesday that he has accepted the resignation of Jimmy Heggins, who has coached the offensive line at FSU for the past 11 years and has been on the FSU staff for the past 19 seasons.
“Coach Heggins has resigned his position as offensive line coach after 19 years at Florida State University,” said Bowden. “I have accepted his resignation, though I am sad to see him go. Jimmy has been an excellent coach for us and I support his decision to expand his opportunities.”
Heggins, who played for the Seminoles in the mid `70s and was defensive MVP in 1976, came to FSU in 1986 as a full-time coach after a year at Southwestern Louisiana where he tutored the defensive ends. Prior to his stint with the Ragin’ Cajuns, he was running backs coach at Eastern Michigan for two years and Western Illinois for a year. He coached the tight ends and then the noseguards at FSU prior to taking over offensive line duties in 1994 when Brad Scott left to become head coach at South Carolina.
“I’ve enjoyed my 19 years at FSU and right now I think it’s time to move on,” said Heggins. “I’ve got some other things I’m pursuing. I’ll always be a Seminole.”
Under Heggins, 11 Florida State offensive linemen earned All-America honors, including five first team All-Americans. Eight Seminole offensive linemen have been drafted since Heggins took over and NFL draft experts are predicting both offensive tackles Alex Barron and Ray Willis will add to that number in April.
Barron, a two-time consensus All-American, is expected to be selected in the first round of the draft which would make three Heggins’ protégés taken in the first round over the last nine years alone. Seattle selected Walter Jones No. 6 overall in 1997 and he started for the Seahawks as a rookie and is a perennial All-Pro. Tra Thomas was selected with the 11th pick of the 1999 draft by Philadephia and has already been voted to his third Pro Bowl. In addition to his offensive line alumni, Heggins coached a pair of tight ends who enjoyed solid NFL careers in Reggie Johnson and Lonnie Johnson.
A native of Salisbury, N.C., Heggins began his collegiate coaching career as a graduate assistant at East Carolina in 1980. He filled the same role at FSU in 1981 and `82.