Brian Kelly ’83 Named Head Coach of Notre Dame Football team

Assumption alumnus and former defensive coordinator Brian K. Kelly ’83, who recently took the University of Cincinnati Bearcats to two consecutive Bowl Championship Series appearances and a perfect 12-0 regular season in 2009, has been named the 29th head football coach at the University of Notre Dame.

Notre Dame's president, Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C., praised Kelly in an announcement on the school’s website. "I am absolutely delighted to welcome Brian and his family to the Notre Dame family. He brings to us a long and successful career as a head coach, and I am confident that he will have even greater success here. I'm also very pleased that he has put considerable emphasis on excellence in the classroom and that his student-athletes graduate at a rate well above the norm."

As an Assumption football player Kelly played at middle linebacker for the Greyhounds and graduated from Assumption College with a B.A. in Political Science. His football career at Assumption included 19 tackles in the final game of the 1981 season and he captained the two of the most successful club football teams in Hounds' history for Hall of Fame Coach Paul Cantiani '73. Kelly earned all conference honors in the New England Collegiate Football Conference as both a junior and senior and left with a school-record 314 tackles (currently seventh). His record 214 assists stood until 2005 when broken by Chris Grogan '06.

Kelly served as defensive coordinator at Assumption for four seasons under Hall of Famer Bernie Gaughan, raising the team’s level of play before leaving to coach for Grand Valley. At same time, he coached women’s softball and ushered the Assumption team to 20-plus and entrance into the postseason regional rankings. Kelly’s winning ways were recognized when he was named to the Assumption Alumni-Athletics Hall of Fame in 2006.

A native of Chelsea, MA, Kelly graduated from St. John's Prep (Danvers, MA), where he starred in three sports: football, hockey and baseball. Brian and his wife, Paqui, have three children - Patrick Liam, Grace Marie and Kenzel Michael.
Notre Dame’s webpage has the official announcement.

Kimberly Dunbar, Director of Public Affairs, Assumption College @AssumptionNews