Patrick Higgins preparing Purdue for bowl, keeping one eye on horizon
Posted by: Josh Kendall on December 11, 2012
It's been a hectic month for Purdue's Patrick Higgins.
The Boilermakers wide receivers coach received a battlefield promotion with three weeks left in the regular season when offensive coordinator Gary Nord couldn't work due to a severe back injury. Higgins was named interim offensive coordinator then. When head coach Danny Hope was dismissed, Higgins was bumped up a notch again, this time to interim head coach.
Now Higgins is preparing Purdue to face Oklahoma State in the Heart of Dallas Bowl. He will try not to change much.
"You are going to stay true to what you are able to do well," he said. "The more time you take away from practicing what you do well, that becomes what you don't do very well. We are going to really concentrate on what we did the last three weeks to get us where we are."
Higgins compared getting ready for a bowl game with preparing for a marathon.
"You start your training slow, then you get to your peak, then you taper off," he said. "We want them ready and eager to play. We don't want to lose the game out here. We want to get them out here and get them where they are sharp and crisp and focused and get them to the game, saying, 'I can't wait to hit somebody.' Instead of them saying, 'We've been banging so hard in practice, I just want to get through this and go home.'"
Higgins and the Boilermaker assistants have to do all that while also preparing for life after the bowl game. Incoming head coach Darrell Hazell said he will consider all of the team's current coaches for positions on his staff.
"We're here for the kids, and we're professionals about this," Higgins told the Lafayette Journal and Courier. "We know what we need to do. We know what we have to do to get ready for practice. We focus on that and we get that done. If they have some time, they can try to reach out to contacts to see what's going on."
Higgins told the newspaper he tries to spend an hour each night reaching out to contacts in the coaching business in hopes of finding a new job.
Josh Kendall is a staff writer for CoachingSearch.com and has covered the SEC for more than 15 years for papers such as the Athens Banner-Herald, Macon Telegraph, and The State. He’s the father of two boys who he’s hoping don’t inherit his wide receiver frame and offensive guard feet. Follow @EyeOnCoaches on twitter and send your feedback to firstname.lastname@example.org