Jacksonville Jaguars head coach Jack Del Rio has completed his coaching staff for the 2004 season. The three new coaches signed are Pete Rodriguez, special teams coordinator, Bob Ligashesky, special teams assistant, and Andy Heck, offensive assistant.
"These are good coaches who will complement our staff," Del Rio said. "They each will be a good fit and will have a role in our continued development as a team."
Rodriguez, 63, is a veteran of 16 NFL coaching seasons, including the last six with the Seattle Seahawks. He is widely regarded as one of the top special teams coaches in the NFL, as evidenced by being named Special Teams Coach of the Year in 1992 and Special Teams Coach of the Decade in the '90s by the Dallas Morning News. Rodriguez has tutored five Pro Bowl punters.
Ligashesky, 42, just finished his fourth season at the University of Pittsburgh, where he served as tight ends coach and special teams coordinator. The tight ends thrived under Ligashesky's guidance. Senior Kris Wilson averaged 14.6 yards per catch in 2003 and finished second on the team in receptions behind Larry Fitzgerald with 44 catches for 643 yards and 9 touchdowns. He was a finalist for the 2003 John Mackey Award. Punter Andy Lee finished his career as two-time Big East Co-Special Teams Player of the Year.
Heck, 37, is a former long-time NFL standout. He recently completed his third season at the University of Virginia, the final year as tight ends coach. He served the previous two seasons as a graduate assistant coach, working with the tight ends.
Rodriguez entered the NFL as the Los Angeles Raiders special teams coach (1988-89), and served in the same capacity with the Phoenix Cardinals (1990-93) before joining the Washington Redskins staff (1994-97). Prior to entering the NFL he worked with the USFL's Michigan Panthers as a defensive line coach from 1983-84. He also coached with the USFL's Denver Gold (1985) and Jacksonville Bulls (1986), while spending one year in the CFL with the Ottawa Rough Riders (1987).
Rodriguez broke into coaching as a graduate assistant at Arizona (1968-69) and later served as defensive coordinator at Western Illinois (1970-73), Florida State (1974-75), Iowa State (1976-78) and Northern Iowa (1986). He served as head coach at Western Illinois from 1979-82.
Rodriguez earned his bachelor and master degrees from Western State College in Colorado and masters of education from the University of Arizona. Rodriguez and his wife, Sherry, have four children, daughters Regina, Marla and Lori, and son John. They also have three grandchildren, Colby, Riley and Nya.
Ligashesky joined Pittsburgh after serving the previous nine years (1991-99) at Bowling Green, where he coached the linebackers and special teams. During Ligashesky's Bowling Green tenure, the Falcons captured two Mid-American Conference championships (1991 and 1992) and earned a pair of bowl berths. He was promoted to assistant head coach prior to the 1999 season.
Prior to Bowling Green, Ligashesky coached the outside linebackers and worked with the special teams at Kent State for two years (1989-90). From 1986-88 he was a graduate assistant at Arizona State, where he worked with the outside linebackers and defensive line. During his stint with ASU, the Sun Devils captured the 1986 Pacific 10 championship and earned berths in the Rose and Freedom bowls. Ligashesky began his coaching career as a graduate assistant at Wake Forest in 1985.
A linebacker at Sto-Rox High School, Ligashesky went on to earn three letters at Indiana University of Pa. He received his bachelor's degree in exercise science from IUP in 1985.
Heck worked with freshman All-American Heath Miller, who set the ACC touchdown record for a tight end with nine, and in his sophomore season Miller led the team in receiving with 70 catches for 835 yards and six touchdowns en route to first-team All-ACC honors.
Prior to joining the Virginia staff, Heck played in the NFL for 12 seasons as a standout offensive lineman. He finished his playing career with the Washington Redskins, where he played for two seasons. As the starting left tackle in 1999, he blocked for an offense that ranked second in the NFL. From 1994 to 1998, he was a five-year starter for the Chicago Bears. In 1995, he gave up no sacks as part of an offensive line that yielded the fewest sacks in the NFL.
Heck was drafted in the first round (15th overall) by the Seattle Seahawks where he was a unanimous All-Rookie selection in 1989. A five-year starter with the Seahawks, he played three seasons without missing a snap. A 1989 graduate of Notre Dame, Heck received a bachelor's degree in American studies. A first-team All-American, he captained the 1988 national championship team.
With the addition of the three new assistants, Del Rio now has 15 coaches on his staff.