Reunited at BYU, Jeff Grimes, Ryan Pugh share strong bond

PROVO — For first-year BYU offensive line coach Ryan Pugh, life has been a whirlwind the past few months.

Not only did he leave his position as the O-line coach at UT-San Antonio to come to Provo, but he and his wife, Cathey Lee, also moved to the area and bought a house. Then she gave birth to a baby daughter, the couple’s first child, a few weeks ago during spring practices.

“A lot of changes,” said Pugh, a 29-year-old native of Hoover, Alabama. “We’re starting to settle in now and get a feel for things. By the time we’re settled in, I’ll be out on the road, recruiting.”

BYU’s hiring of Jeff Grimes as its offensive coordinator in December set in motion many changes in the Cougar football program — and for Pugh as well.

When Grimes asked Pugh if he wanted to join the staff at BYU, there wasn’t much hesitation on Pugh’s part.

“He and I spent some time talking about the opportunity more than anything, making sure it’s the right fit for my family and the best thing to do for my career, too,” Pugh said. “There wasn’t any hesitation in the opportunity to get back working with him and being in Provo and living here. I had heard how much of an impact Provo had made on him during his first stop here. I knew kind of what I was getting into before I got here. It’s been nothing but great since I’ve been here.”

Reunited at BYU, Pugh and Grimes share a connection that goes back to the days when Grimes was the offensive line coach at Auburn and Pugh played for him. They won a national championship together with the Tigers in 2010. Pugh was a three-time All-SEC selection, earning All-America honors as a senior, and was a finalist for the Rimington Trophy.

Grimes sees a lot of himself in Pugh.

“Probably more than he’d like to admit. But he and I align so tightly in terms of who we are as people. As a player, I saw a guy who was passionate about the game, tough, hard working — not the most talented guy,” Grimes said, “but had enough talent to be a really good player and became a great player, a four-year starter on a great team in a great league because he worked really hard at it and he’s really smart.

“Those are the same things that make him …read more

Source:: Deseret News – Sports News


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