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December 19, 2012

J.B. Grimes named OL coach

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AUBURN -- J.B. Grimes, who's spent the past 30 years coaching at the collegiate level, has been named the Tigers' new offensive line coach.

The veteran of 14 bowl games spent the 2012 season at Arkansas State under Gus Malzahn, who was named Auburn's head coach two weeks ago. He is the fourth assistant hired by Malzahn -- joining offensive coordinator Rhett Lashlee, defensive coordinator Ellis Johnson and secondary coach Charlie Harbison.

"J.B. is a tremendous coach who is one of the nation's top teachers at the offensive line position," Malzahn said. "He has an incredible resume coaching the position and has taught countless players at the NFL level. He played a vital role in our team's success this past season and we're fortunate to have him join our program at Auburn."

This season at Arkansas State, Grimes coached an offensive line unit that helped set a school-record with 481.8 yards of total offense per game while ranking 16th nationally in fewest sacks allowed. Senior offensive lineman Zach McKnight earned first-team All-Sun Belt honors under Grimes' direction as the offense led the Sun Belt in rushing and ranked in the top 25 nationally in total offense, scoring offense and rushing offense.

"I'm excited about the opportunity to coach at Auburn and join Coach Malzahn's staff," Grimes said. "I've always admired Auburn football having coached in the Southeastern Conference and even when I was younger watching Pat Sullivan and Terry Beasley play. It's a special place with great history, traditions and fans. I've known Gus for several years and have admired the things he's done as a coach. We did some great things this past season at Arkansas State and I look forward to doing the same at Auburn."

Prior to his arrival at ASU, Grimes spent two seasons at Kansas (2010-11) and Mississippi State (2004-08) as the offensive line coach. Grimes' coaching career also includes stints at East Carolina, Texas A&M, Virginia Tech, Arkansas, Louisiana-Monroe and Delta State as an assistant coach over the last three decades.

In his first season at Mississippi State, the Bulldogs rushed for 1,744 yards, the most at the school in four years. Behind his offensive line, MSU produced three seasons with a 1,000-yard rusher.



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