Former NFL Wide Receiver Jerricho Cotchery Named New Head Football Coach At Limestone University

Charles Wyatt
Jerricho New Head Coach

Former National Football League wide receiver and Carolina Panthers assistant wide receivers coach Jerricho Cotchery has been named as the new head of Limestone University’s football team.

For the past two seasons, Cotchery has served as Limestone’s assistant head coach and wide receivers coach as the Saints compiled a combined record of 16-8 and qualified for the NCAA Division II National Championship playoffs in back-to-back years. From 2022-2023, Limestone recorded a collective South Atlantic Conference record of 15-3 and was crowned co-champions of the Piedmont Division both seasons.

Cotchery is replacing former Limestone head coach Mike Furrey who has stepped down after two years directing the Saints to pursue other opportunities. Furrey also coached at Limestone in 2016 and 2017. More information regarding Furrey’s next coaching role is expected to be announced soon.

Furrey spoke to the Saints players during a team meeting this morning, and that was followed by the announcement that Cotchery is the new head coach at Limestone.

“We are extremely excited to have Jerricho as our new head football coach,” said Limestone’s Vice President for Intercollegiate Athletics Hailey Martin. “He is so well liked and respected by our student-athletes and coaches. From coaching with the Carolina Panthers to a remarkable 12-year NFL playing career with three different teams and a Super Bowl appearance, Jerricho has brought a wealth of knowledge to our program, and we are thrilled to have him guiding our Saints forward. We cannot say enough wonderful things about what Coach Furrey did for Limestone football and we wish him nothing but the very best as he enters the next chapter of his career.”

A two-time All-Atlantic Coast Conference selection at North Carolina State, Cotchery was selected in the fourth round of the 2004 NFL draft by the New York Jets. He went on to play with the Pittsburgh Steelers from 2011-2013, before signing with the Carolina Panthers. In his second and final season playing with the Panthers, Cotchery helped lead Carolina to the Super Bowl.

In his 12 NFL seasons, Cotchery played in 175 games, catching 524 passes for 6,623 yards and 34 touchdowns.

Cotchery served as the Panthers assistant wide receivers coach from 2017-2019. He worked with a receiving corps that included Kelvin Benjamin, Devin Funchess, and Curtis Samuel while also working with Christian McCaffery and Greg Olson. The Panthers posted an 11-5 record in 2017, earning a wild card playoff berth.

A native of Birmingham, AL, Cotchery and his wife Mercedes have five children.

While at North Carolina State, Cotchery finished his collegiate playing career as the leading receiver at that time in Wolfpack history, tallying a total of 200 career receptions. His 3,119 total yards and 21 total touchdowns both rank second in school history. He played in 49 games for the Wolfpack, catching a pass in 39 consecutive games to set a school record. Cotchery graduated from N.C. State with a bachelor’s degree in Sport Management.

Cotchery, who was named N.C. State’s 2021 Atlantic Coast Conference Legend, graduated from Phillips High School in Birmingham, where he played wide receiver and defensive back and was named to the all-state team after his junior and senior years. He lettered in football and basketball in all four years of high school.

“Limestone football is in excellent hands with Coach Cotchery at the helm,” noted Limestone’s Acting President Jeremy Whitaker. “Coach Furrey certainly raised the standard of Limestone football, and we are forever grateful. We are now looking forward to Coach Cotchery helping to take us to even greater heights.”

Limestone is expected to hold a press conference soon to formally introduce Cotchery as the Saints’ new head coach.