JONESBORO, Ark. (1/8/21) – Arkansas State head football coach Butch Jones announced Friday that Matt Limegrover has been named the Red Wolves’ offensive line coach and run game coordinator.
Owning over 30 years of collegiate coaching experience, Limegrover has participated in 13 bowl games, including the Rose Bowl, Fiesta Bowl and Cotton Bowl, three combined Big Ten Conference championships at Penn State (2016) and Northwestern (1995, 1996) and numerous FCS Playoff games.
“Coach Limegrover is an individual that I have known for over 23 years and also had the opportunity to work with,” said Jones. “We’re excited to welcome him, his wife, Ann, daughter, Emma, and son, TJ, into our football family. Matt brings a wealth of knowledge and experience at all levels of football and is regarded as one of the top offensive line coaches in the country. His 15-plus years of experience as a coordinator as well will be a great resource and benefit to our entire coaching staff.”
Limegrover most recently served as Penn State’s offensive line coach from 2016-19 when the Nittany Lions posted a 42-11 record with four straight bowl appearances, including Cotton Bowl (2019) and Fiesta Bowl (2017) victories.
Promoted to run game coordinator in 2018, Limegrover helped the program finish ranked inside the top 10 in the final Associated Press and Coaches Top-25 polls three times, including a No. 7 spot in 2016 when it won the Big Ten title.
Limegrover coached three All-Big Ten selections, Steven Gonzalez, Will Fries and Michael Menet, in 2019 when the Nittany Lions ranked 15th in the nation in scoring offense with 35.8 points per game. Additionally, Ryan Bates and Connor McGovern both earned All-Big Ten honors in 2018 as well, and McGovern went on to be a third-round draft pick by the Dallas Cowboys in the 2019 NFL Draft.
During 2017, Limegrover continued to develop an offensive line that helped the Nittany Lions to a second-straight New Year’s Six bowl game for the first time since 1985 (Orange) and 1986 (Fiesta). Tackle Ryan Bates earned all-conference accolades as he blocked for All-American Saquon Barkley.
The Nittany Lions completed the 2017 season in the top 25 in the FBS scoring offense (7th), total offense (19th), red zone offense (21st) and passing offense (23rd).
Limegrover’s offensive line battled injuries, but was the cornerstone for Penn State’s record-breaking offense and 2016 Big Ten Championship run. The squad broke the Penn State record for total offense (6,056) and passing yards (3,650) and tied the school record for points scored (526). Senior center Brian Gaia claimed All-Big Ten laurels, while offensive lineman Ryan Bates was named to the USA Today and FWAA Freshman All-America teams.
Prior to Penn State, Limegrover spent five seasons (2011-15) at Minnesota as the offensive coordinator and offensive line coach. He held the title of assistant head coach his last two seasons with the Gophers.
During his tenure, the Golden Gophers’ offense had steady growth, increasing its scoring average by 10 points from 2011-14. He helped the program to three consecutive bowls and eight wins in 2013 and 2014 after a 3-9 mark in 2011.
In 2014, Minnesota had its first offensive lineman receive All-Big Ten first-team honors since 2005 when Zac Epping claimed the recognition.
Limegrover spent 16 seasons working under former Minnesota head coach Jerry Kill, including four stops at Minnesota, Northern Illinois, Southern Illinois and Emporia State. He started his time with Kill as the offensive line coach at Emporia State for two seasons (1999-2000) and then served as the offensive coordinator and offensive line coach at Southern Illinois (2001-07) and Northern Illinois (2008-10).
While at Northern Illinois, Limegrover produced seven All-Mid-American Conference offensive lineman, including two first team selections in 2010. He helped the Huskies to three consecutive bowl berths and the 2010 MAC West title. The Husky line gave up only 15 sacks in 2009, when NIU also led the MAC and ranked 19th nationally in rushing with 202.4 yards per game.
Limegrover’s time at Southern Illinois saw the Salukis win three conference titles, and he helped guide an offense that ranked in the top 10 in scoring in the NCAA for six consecutive seasons (2002-07).
Limegrover also made coaching stops at Ferris State (1997-98) as the offensive line coach and run game coordinator, Northwestern (1995-96) as a graduate assistant, the University of Chicago (1991-94) serving in a variety of roles, spanning interim head coach (1994), offensive coordinator, offensive line coach and tight ends coach.
During his time on the Northwestern coaching staff, Limegrover helped lead the program to Big Ten Conference championships in 1995 and 1996.
Name an honorable mention All-UAA as a senior, Limegrover played offensive line from 1987-90 at the University of Chicago, where he earned his bachelor’s degree in 1991. He went on to earn his master’s degree from Northwestern University in 2000.
Original article source: https://astateredwolves.com/news/2021/1/8/football-limegrover-named-a-state-offensive-line-coach-run-game-coordinator.aspx | Article may or may not reflect the views of KLEK 102.5 FM or The Voice of Arkansas Minority Advocacy Council