ESU Alumni Climbs NFL Ranks

Screen Grab via Denver Broncos ESU Alum and Denver Broncos HC Vic Fangio.

Nick Stein

Contributing Writer

Over the years, multiple East Stroudsburg University alumni have gone on to accomplished sports careers. One of the most noteworthy to come out of the university is Vic Fangio, who was recently hired as the head coach of the Denver Broncos of the NFL.

This position for Fangio comes after over 40 years’ experience in coaching high school, college, and professional football teams.

After graduating from Dunmore High School in Dunmore, PA, Fangio went on to receive his Bachelor’s Degree in Health and Physical Education from East Stroudsburg University.

Upon receiving his degree, he returned to Dunmore High School as the linebackers coach in 1979.

After a brief stint with the USFL’s Philadelphia/Baltimore Stars, Fangio officially began his NFL career as the linebackers coach for the New Orleans Saints.

From 1995-98, Fangio leads the Carolina Panthers Defense under head coach Dom Capers.

During that time period, the Panthers’ defense was 7th in the NFL in total defense in the just the team’s first season. The following year, in 1996, Fangio’s defense was 5th in the league in takeaways.

That same year the Panthers advanced to the NFC Championship Game.

Fangio was hired as the defensive coordinator for the Baltimore Ravens from 2006 to 2009.

In 2010, Fangio accepted the defensive coordinator job at Stanford University, under head coach Jim Harbaugh.

The following season, Jim Harbaugh was hired as the Head Coach of the San Francisco 49ers and brought Fangio with him to San Francisco as defensive coordinator.

Over his next four seasons with the 49ers, Fangio’s defense averaged 17.4 points per game, second in the NFL in points allowed, made three playoff appearances, and went to Super Bowl XLVII.

Fangio accepted his next and final defensive coordinator job with the Chicago Bears, in 2015. He coached the Bears defense up until last season, a season in which the Bears advanced to the divisional round of the playoffs.

Under his tutelage, the Bears went from 20th in total defense his first year to being the number one rated defense by the end of his tenure.

On January 10, 2019, after 32 years of coaching defenses in the NFL, Vic Fangio has given his first head coach job, with the Denver Broncos.

He is the 17th head coach in franchise history, and the first ESU alum ever to become a head coach of any professional sports team.

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