Jimmy Lindsey begins his third season on The Hill as the defensive line coach.
In 2018, Lindsey coached primarily a defensive end group that saw underclassmen Juwuan Jones and DeAngelo Malone continue to emerge as playmakers.
As Jones transitioned from high school linebacker to collegiate edge rusher, the Sugar Hill, Ga., native redshirted the 2017 campaign. Then this year as a redshirt freshman, Jones went on to set the WKU FBS Era record (dating back to 2009) with five sacks as a freshman, earning Conference USA All-Freshman and Honorable Mention esteem. Malone, meanwhile, used his dynamic skill set in a edge rush and pass coverage hybrid position. He led all Hilltoppers with six sacks for 40 yards lost and two forced fumbles. He also led the team's defensive linemen with 60 tackles, nine tackles for loss and eight quarterback hurries. His final sack of the campaign was for a safety at Louisiana Tech.
Also among that group was Carson Jordan, who recorded a pair of tackles for loss as he came back from a season-ending injury in 2017. Heath Wiggins, Devon Quincy, Robert Crawford and Nicholas Coffey also saw snaps along the WKU defensive front. As a whole, the Hilltoppers improved to 28 team sacks, up from 12 the previous year.
In his first season, Lindsey's defensive front battled through injury and grew together as the season went along with the steady leadership from senior tackle Chris Johnson and senior defensive end Derik Overstreet. By the play No. 2 of the season, however, Lindsey was already beginning work on developing depth at the defensive end position following the loss of two expected starters at the position, including end Carson Jordan one the first play of the season. In stepped true freshman DeAngelo Malone who continued to grow as the season progressed into one of the team's more effective true pass rushing specialists.
Defensive tackle Evan Sayner had developed into an All-Conference caliber interior defender before an injury sidelined him midway through the year. In his place, junior Julien Lewis emerged and grew into a stout run-stopped by season's end, giving the Hilltoppers a promising front four heading into 2018. Johnson earned All-Conference USA honorable mention accolades after leading all defenders in quarterback hurries from his tackle position. And, despite the loss of experience due to injury up front, Lindsey's defensive front still finished in the top half of C-USA in rush defense and is expected to make a significant leap forward in 2018 as Malone, Sayner, Lewis, Jordan all return along with promising youth in Jalen Madden and Jeremy Darvin who got valuable snaps in 2017.
Prior to coming to WKU, Lindsey spent one season at Georgia Southern where he served in a similar capacity. Prior to working in Statesboro, Lindsey spent four seasons at Furman as the defensive line coach and added the title of assistant head coach in 2015. At Furman, Lindsey mentored defensive end Gary Wilkins to All-America honors during his senior season in 2014 and a contract with the Oakland Raiders. Lindsey also helped Furman win a Southern Conference championship in 2013.
Before Furman, Lindsey spent two seasons at his alma mater, Chattanooga, coaching the defensive line and special teams. In 2011, four of Lindsey's defensive linemen earned All-SoCon honors including first-teamer Josh Williams. Lindsey also spent time coaching at Tennessee-Martin, Miami (OH), Gardner-Webb and with four NFL teams in the Minority Coaching Internship program.
During his time at Gardner-Webb (2003-06), Lindsey coached the defensive line and linebackers as well as served as the recruiting coordinator. One of Lindsey's products, Harold Wells, was named the 2004 I-AA Football Gazette National Defensive Lineman of the Year, and defensive end Brian Johnson was drafted by the Kansas City Chiefs in 2008.
Lindsey, a 2001 graduate from Chattanooga with a degree in sports administration, is married to the former Lauren Thomas. He has one daughter, Kiara. Lindsey, a former linebacker, was a team captain at Chattanooga during his senior season in 1999 and the recipient of UTC's Marco Sheppard Mr. Hustle Award.
THE LINDSEY FILE
Born: Aug. 22, 1977
Hometown: Morven, N.C.
College: Chattanooga, '01
PLAYING CAREER (Linebacker)
College: Chattanooga (1996-99)
2000-01: Chattanooga (Assistant)
2002: Chattanooga (Linebackers)
2003-06: Gardner-Webb (Defensive Line/Linebackers/Special Teams/Recruiting Coordinator)
2007-08: Miami (Ohio) (Defensive Ends/Co-Special Teams Coordinator)
2009: Tennessee-Martin (Defensive Line)
2010-11: Chattanooga (Defensive Line/Special Teams)
2012-14: Furman (Defensive Line)
2015: Furman (Assistant Head Coach/Defensive Line)
2016: Georgia Southern (Defensive Line)
2017: WKU (Defensive Line)
2018-19: WKU (Defensive Ends/Recruiting Coordinator)
NFL MINORITY COACHING INTERNSHIPS
2006: Cleveland Browns
2008: Detroit Lions
2010: Denver Broncos
2013: San Diego Chargers
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