Purdue names Higgins as WRs coach

Purdue on Tuesday announced the hiring of Patrick Higgins as its new receivers coach.

Higgins spent the last six seasons at BYU, where he coached the outside receivers and served as special-teams coordinator. He'll continue to assist Purdue in the kicking game -- an area of concern the last two seasons -- and work alongside Boilers special-teams coordinator J.B. Gibboney. Higgins knows coach Danny Hope and worked with Boilers offensive coordinator Gary Nord at UTEP.

“I am extremely excited about joining the Purdue staff,” Higgins said in a statement. “I’ve known coach Hope for a long time, and have great respect for him and his program. I am also looking forward to reconnecting with coach Nord, who I was fortunate enough to work with at UTEP. I feel blessed and honored to be a part of the Boilermaker coaching staff and am looking forward to winning the Big Ten title and going to the Rose Bowl."

Higgins replaces veteran Purdue aide Brian Rock, who recently left to become offensive coordinator at Kent State. He inherits a receiving corps that likely will be led by All-Big Ten wideout Keith Smith, seeking a sixth year of eligibility after tearing ligaments in his knee in September. Smith should find out about the sixth year next month.