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Steve Spagnuolo '82 Named Head Coach of the St. Louis Rams

Steve Spagnuolo  Springfield, Mass. -- January 18, 2009 -- Steve Spagnuolo, who graduated from Springfield College in 1982, has been named head coach of the National Football League's St. Louis Rams, the Rams announced last night.

He reportedly has signed a four-year contract, and was introduced at a press conference in St. Louis Monday (Jan. 19).

Spagnuolo has been the defensive coordinator of the New York Giants for the past two years.

Spagnuolo graduated from Springfield College with a bachelor's degree in physical education in 1982. He played football at the College, where he was a two-year starting wide receiver under Head Coach Howard Vandersea. Spagnuolo received the College's Male Scholar-Athlete Award as a senior in 1982, and then went on to receive his master's degree in sport management at UMass in 1983.

Spagnuolo's first taste in the NFL came in 1983 when he served as an intern with the Washington Redskins under then-assistant general manager Charlie Casserly, now a member of the Springfield College Athletics Hall of Fame.

A native of Whitinsville, Mass., Spagnuolo is a graduate of Grafton (Mass.) High School, where he is a member of that school's Athletics Hall of Fame. He is a former defensive coordinator on the college level at the University of Connecticut and the University of Maine. He also served as an assistant coach at UMass, Rutgers, Lafayette, and Bowling Green.

He was then hired as a defensive coordinator with the Frankfurt Galaxy of the European Football League in 1998. He returned when he was hired as a defensive assistant coach with the NFL's Philadelphia Eagles in 1999. He later became the Eagles' defensive coordinator.

In 2007, Spagnuolo was named defensive coordinator of the New York Giants under Head Coach Tom Coughlin. It was in that position that Steve received his greatest notoriety as his defensive unit sacked Tom Brady a season-high five times en route to holding the then-undefeated New England Patriots to a season-low 14 points in a 17-14 victory in Super Bowl XVII.

This past season, the New York Giants were ranked fifth in the league in total defense, despite the loss of seven-time All Pro defensive lineman Michael Strahan to retirement, and the loss of fellow All Pro defensive end Osi Umenyiora to a pre-season injury.

Spagnuolo will take over for interim Head Coach Jim Haslett. The Rams this past year finished 2-14 under two separate coaches, losing their final 10 games of the season. On the positive side, the Rams will have the second pick of the NFL draft this coming April.

"We considered some very qualified and outstanding candidates for this position, but we kept coming back to Steve Spagnuolo," said St. Louis Rams General Manager Billy Devaney in a prepared statement.

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Head Coach Mike DeLong Michael C. “Mike” DeLong ’74 enters his 28th season as a head football coach in the fall of 2009. He enters his 26th year at Springfield College alone. For the past 25 years (1984 through 2008, inclusive), he has been the head coach at Springfield, his alma mater. Mike had also been the head coach at Maine Maritime in Castine, Maine in 1979 and 1980. Read more.

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