Change has come to Madison, Wisconsin and the Badgers football program. With change, of course, comes many questions. There is plenty of uncertainty surrounding the Badgers future, but that future sure does seem bright. While it has come at a steep cost (Jim Leonhard leaving the program), the new assortment of coaches at Wisconsin should give Badgers fans cause for celebration and excitement. It was recently reported that Luke Fickell hired UNC’s Phil Longo as his offensive coordinator. In addition, it appears as if Fickell was also to lure away UNC’s offensive line coach, Jack Bicknell Jr. Badgers fans, this is a BIG deal!
SOURCE: UNC offensive line coach Jack Bicknell Jr. also is expected to join the Wisconsin staff as the Badgers new O-line coach. He and new OC Phil Longo coached together at Ole Miss and at UNC: https://t.co/7rR0mYYfDL https://t.co/oHAmylR2gA
— Bruce Feldman (@BruceFeldmanCFB) December 7, 2022
Jack Bicknell Jr. Has Coached in the NFL and NCAA
One of the best ways to help people accept change is to keep some things the same. Wisconsin has long been known for its offensive line factory, and has produced current linemen Kevin Zeitler, Tyler Biadasz, Cole Van Lanen, David Edwards, Rob Havenstein, Michael Dieter, and Ryan Ramczyk. Of course, there will be changes to the offense as Longo and Fickell have relied more on their quarterbacks than their tailbacks in the past. That being said, there is no reason why Wisconsin cannot continue to have one of the best offensive lines in the country. Hiring Jack Bicknell Jr. ensures that they will continue that tradition.
Bicknell comes to Wisconsin with 34 years of coaching experience in the NFL and NCAA. If the name Bicknell sounds familiar, it is because he was Doug Flutie’s center as Boston College where they played for Jack Bicknell Sr. It was at BC that his coaching career began in 1985 as a graduate assistant. Since then, he has created a reputation as an offensive line guru, creating success everywhere he has gone. Below is a list of his career stops:
- 1987-1996: New Hampshire (five years coaching defensive line, five years coaching offensive line)
- 1997-2006: Louisiana Tech (two years as offensive line coach; eight years as head coach)
- 2007-2008: Boston College (offensive line coach)
- 2009-2011: New York Giants (assistant offensive line coach)
- 2012: Kansas City Chiefs (offensive line coach)
- 2013: Pittsburgh Steelers (offensive line coach)
- 2014-2015: Miami Dolphins (assistant offensive line coach)
- 2017-2019: Ole Miss (offensive line coach)
- 2020: Auburn (offensive line coach)
- 2021: Louisville (offensive line coach)
- 2022: North Carolina (offensive line coach)
If Badgers fans were worried about the run game or offensive line being less of an emphasis, they can put those worries to rest. Jack Bicknell Jr. is a GREAT hire.
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