North Carolina

Porter, Heckendorf to complete UNC football staff

Posted February 6, 2014

UNC head coach Larry Fedora reacts to a touchdown by A.J. Blue during the North Carolina Tar Heels vs. N.C. State Wolfpack NCAA football game, Saturday, October 27, 2012 in Chapel Hill, N.C.

North Carolina is set to name former Texas assistant coach Larry Porter as its running backs coach and Arkansas state assistant coach Keith Heckendorf as its quarterbacks coach, according to multiple sources.

UNC head coach Larry Fedora told reporters on Wednesday afternoon that he had filled the remaining two open positions on his coaching staff, but was unwilling to share their names.
Porter, the former head coach at Memphis (’10-11), has worked as running backs coach at numerous BCS-level programs. He coached running backs at Texas last fall under Mack Brown after previous stops at Arizona State, LSU and Oklahoma State.

The Jackson, Miss. native was running backs coach at Oklahoma State from 2002-04 and followed Les Miles to LSU for a five-year stint (’05-09). Porter coached for one season at ASU in 2012 before joining Brown at Texas.

During his time at LSU, Porter was elevated to assistant head coach in 2006 and was twice named National Recruiter of the Year (’07, ‘09).

Porter, who rushed for over 2,000 yards and 20 touchdowns during his college career at Memphis (1990-93), has coached seven running backs that were selected in the NFL Draft, including Jacob Hester, Joseph Addai and Tatum Bell.

Porter got his start as a running backs coach at Tennessee-Martin in 1998 and served in the same role at Arkansas State from 1999-2001.

Heckendorf was announced as Arkansas State’s tight ends coach and recruiting coordinator on Jan. 13 after following former UNC offensive coordinator Blake Anderson to Jonesboro. He served in an offensive quality control position at UNC during the 2012-13 seasons.

Heckendorf’s previous college coaching experience includes stops at Western Carolina and Nebraska. He was Western Carolina’s offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach from 2008-10 after getting his start with the Huskers from 2005-07, where he worked as an offensive quality control coach in his first season and as an offensive graduate assistant his final two seasons in Lincoln.

His first job out of college was as quarterbacks/wide receivers coach at his hometown high school in Mosinee, Wisc.

Heckendorf was a standout quarterback at Division II St. Cloud State in St. Cloud, Minn. from 2000-03. He threw for 9,695 yards and 101 touchdowns during his career and was a two-time finalist for the Harlon Hill Trophy, which is Division II’s version of the Heisman Trophy.

Heckendorf was also a two-time Academic All-American and the 2003 National Football Foundation/College Hall of Fame Scholar-Athlete.


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