BATON ROUGE — Bobby April, a Chalmette, Louisiana native, with an extensive NFL background, has joined the LSU coaching staff as an analyst with a focus on special teams for the bowl season, head coach Ed Orgeron announced on Thursday.
April’s announcement comes on the heels of Orgeron and the Tigers hiring one of the nation’s top offensive coordinators in Matt Canada on Wednesday. Last week, Orgeron announced a new deal along with a promotion to associate head coach for defensive coordinator Dave Aranda.
“We are very fortunate to have Coach April join our staff,” Orgeron said. “He is one of the best special teams coaches in the history of football and our players will benefit tremendously because of Coach April’s knowledge of the game.
“Coach April is a great man and a true Louisianan. He loves Louisiana and from the first time we talked he said he wanted to help his state. It means everything to us to have great people who can be a part of our program like Coach April.”
April, who’s coaching ties to Louisiana include stints at Chalmette High School (1976-77), Tulane (1979), and the New Orleans Saints (1996-99), brings 25 years of NFL experience to the LSU staff. He’s a graduate of Nicholls State where he played linebacker for the Colonels in the 1970s.
During his NFL coaching career, April earned numerous accolades including being named the NFL’s Special Teams Coach of the Year by his peers in both 2004 and 2008. He also helped the St. Louis Rams reach Super Bowl XXXVI.
April’s NFL career includes a most recent stop at the Tennessee Titans, which followed special teams coordinator positions with the New York Jets (2015), Oakland Raiders (2013-14), Philadelphia Eagles (2010-12), Buffalo Bills (2004-09), St. Louis Rams (2001-03), New Orleans Saints (1996-99), Pittsburgh Steelers (1994-95), and Atlanta Falcons (1991-93).
During his extensive NFL career, April coached multiple players to the Pro Bowl, including Bills punter Brian Moorman, who earned two nods in 2005 and 2006. Bills standout and Northwestern State alum Terrence McGee was selected to the Pro Bowl in 2004 after returning a franchise-record three kickoffs for touchdown.
During his 25 years in the NFL, April’s special teams units scored 21 touchdowns, 12 coming on kickoffs and nine on punt returns.
Other standouts that April coached during his NFL career include Deion Sanders, who was twice named to the Pro Bowl under April as a member of the Atlanta Falcons in 1991 and 1992; Rod Woodson, who earned Pro Bowl status as a Steeler under April in 1994; and a trio of kickers Pro Bowl kickers in Philadelphia’s David Akers (2010), St. Louis’ Jeff Wilkins (2003) and Atlanta’s Norm Johnson (1993).
April also spent 13 years as a college assistant coach, working for USC (1987-90), the University of Arizona (1980-86), Tulane (1979) and Southern Mississippi (1978).
April played linebacker at Nicholls State and entered the coaching ranks as an assistant coach at his high school alma mater Chalmette from 1976-77.
April and his wife, Charlene, have five children, a son, Bobby, and four daughters, Julie, Jamie Lee, Angela and Jaclyn.