April 28, 1973|
|Alma mater||Florida A&M University|
|Coaching career (HC unless noted)|
|2008–2010||Florida A&M (co-DC/LB)|
|2011–2012||Florida A&M (DC/LB)|
|Head coaching record|
Earl L. Holmes (born April 28, 1973) is a former American football linebacker and former head coach at Florida A&M University. He was drafted by the Pittsburgh Steelers in the 4th round of the 1996 NFL Draft 126th overall out of Florida A&M University. Holmes was inducted into the FAMU Hall of Fame in July 2005 to join the likes of Alonzo S. "Jake" Gaither and FAMU'S "Famed Final Four of 1952." 
In his NFL career, Holmes played for the Steelers, Cleveland Browns, and Detroit Lions. Holmes, listed at 6'2' 242 lbs, garnered a reputation as a solid run stopping Middle Linebacker. He played his first 6 seasons in Pittsburgh where he totaled 547 tackles (392 solo), 9.5 sacks, an unhealthy 56 tackles for loss, 3 forced fumbles, 4 fumbles recovered, 21 pass deflections, and 1 interception for 36 yards in 81 games. In 2002 Holmes signed a free agent deal with the Cleveland Browns. He had one of his best seasons of his career by totaling 128 tackles(96 solo), 8.5 tackles for loss, 1 forced fumble, 1 fumble recovery, and 5 pass deflections in leading the Browns to a playoff berth. Holmes finished his career with three solid seasons for the Detroit Lions.
In his 10-year career he totaled 958 tackles (685 solos), 11.5 sacks, 89 tackles for loss, 6 forced fumbles, 5 fumble recoveries, 29 pass deflections, and 1 interception for 36 yards in 140 games.
Holmes was affectionally known as "The Hit Man" by the Steelers' faithful.
In 2009, he returned to Florida A&M to serve on the coaching staff of Joe Taylor, eventually rising to defensive coordinator in 2012. Just before the end of the season, Taylor retired, and Holmes was named as interim head coach. On January 11, 2013, he was officially named the head coach and interim tag was removed.
He was relieved of his duties as head coach on October 28, 2014.
Head coaching record
|Florida A&M Rattlers (Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference) (2012–present)|
- Official Athletic Site, Florida A&M, http://thefamurattlers.cstv.com/hallfame/famu-hallfame.html
- "Joe Taylor Steps Down As FAMU Head Football Coach" (Press release). Florida A&M Sports Information. November 7, 2012. Retrieved November 20, 2012.