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Friday, January 23, 2009
BC announces Bicknell's departure

By ESPN.com staff
ESPN.com

Posted by ESPN.com's Heather Dinich

BC officially announced the departure of assistant head football coach and offensive line coach Jack Bicknell Jr. to the New York Giants, where he was hired by former BC coach Tom Coughlin.

In 1991, Coughlin succeeded Bicknell's father, also Jack, as the head coach at Boston College.

"He was the offensive line coach at Boston College for two 10-win seasons," Coughlin said in a prepared statement. "They played in back-to-back ACC championship games with a lot of young guys in his second year.

"I have followed his career closely and I know very well of him and I think he will make an excellent addition to our staff."

Here is more from the release:

"I couldn't be more excited," Bicknell said. "Obviously, the New York Giants are one of the top organizations in the NFL, and I feel like I am going to have a chance to work for one of the top head coaches in the NFL and for one of the top teams in the NFL. It really is exciting and at this point in my career it is something that I am looking to do. I have enjoyed working at the collegiate level, but I have never really had an opportunity to get into the NFL, and this is a chance for me to start to learn the NFL game and what that is all about."

Bicknell is particularly excited about being reunited with Coughlin after more than 25 years.

"He was basically the offensive coordinator," Bicknell said. "He was the guy running the show, for sure, though he didn't have that title. I just had the utmost respect for him. Obviously, we all know he is an unbelievable coach, but also to me he is just a great person. One thing you know about him is he is a very loyal person and very honest, so it was an honor to play for him, and I really look forward to working for him now."

In the recently-concluded season, the line coached by Bicknell helped Boston College finish fifth in the ACC in both scoring (24.7 points a game) and in rushing (143.3 yards per game) and third in sacks allowed (21 in 14 games). In 2007, Bicknell helped mold a young offensive line that protected ACC Player of the Year Matt Ryan -- now the Atlanta Falcons' quarterback -- and helped the Eagles generate nearly 6,000 yards of total offense. The Eagles allowed only 22 sacks in 14 games. Bicknell helped develop Gosder Cherilus, whom the Detroit Lions selected with the 17th overall pick in last year's NFL Draft. BC finished the season ranked 10th in the nation, the team's best final poll finish since Bicknell was a member of the team in 1984.

"It was great to be back at B.C.," Bicknell said. "That is my school and I love the school and we were able to win 20 games in two years, went to two ACC championship games, and we had Matt Ryan, so it was a wonderful two years. I certainly appreciate all the opportunities that (athletic director) Gene DeFilippo and coach Jags (former coach Jeff Jagodzinski) gave me. It was just a great two years, but I am really, really excited about starting in with the Giants."

That '84 team is perhaps the one that is most fondly remembered in Boston College history. The Eagles went 9-2, Flutie won the Heisman and the quarterback and Gerard Phelan hooked up for one of the most famous plays in college football history -- which started with Bicknell's snap.

Bicknell's career highlight was snapping the ball to Flutie when the Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback threw the famous Hail Mary pass to beat the University of Miami in 1984.

"Everybody forgets about me," Bicknell said. "They remember about the guy who threw it and caught it, but if I screwed up the snap, it never would have happened."