Albany native, Super Bowl champ Lewis joins UAlbany football staff; Great Danes shuffle assistant roles

Football player carries the ball

New York Giants' Dion Lewis (33) during the first half of an NFL football game against the Cleveland Browns in December 2020. (AP Photo/Corey Sipkin)

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ALBANY — Albany native and Super Bowl champion Dion Lewis has joined UAlbany football as its assistant running backs coach, the program announced Friday along with a slate of positional changes among the coaching staff.

Lewis joins the Great Danes after a 10-year NFL career. He was drafted 149th overall in the fifth round of the 2011 NFL Draft by the Philadelphia Eagles after a collegiate career at Pittsburgh. During his career, Lewis also suited up for the Cleveland Browns, Indianapolis Colts, New England Patriots, Tennessee Titans, and New York Giants.

“We’re very excited to add Dion to our staff,” UAlbany head coach Greg Gattuso said in a release. “He’s a great individual, I’ve known him since our time at Pittsburgh together. He’s bringing a wealth of experience from the NFL with him that will really help our team, and our backfield specifically.”

“It’s great to be back in the Capital Region,” Lewis said in the release. “I’m extremely grateful to join the Great Dane family. I’d like to extend my thanks to Coach Gattuso, the entire football staff, and [athletic director] Mark Benson for welcoming me. I’m excited to get to work and hit the ground running with this group.”

Lewis was a member of the 2016 Patriots team that won the Super Bowl. He became the first player in NFL history to score rushing, receiving, and kickoff return touchdowns in a playoff game, helping New England defeat the Houston Texans, 34-16, in the AFC divisional round.

His best NFL season came with New England in 2017, when he rushed for 896 yards and scored 10 total touchdowns — six rushing, three receiving and one on a kickoff return.

In addition to Lewis joining the team, multiple individuals on the coaching staff now sport new titles. Offensive coordinator Jared Ambrose has added the role of associate head coach, while Bill Nesselt and Joe Bernard have essentially swapped roles, with Nesselt taking over as defensive coordinator and linebackers coach, while Bernard will serve as special teams coordinator and defensive line coach.

The complete staff lines up as follows:

  • Greg Gattuso: Head Coach (10th Season)
  • Jared Ambrose: Associate Head Coach/Offensive Coordinator/Quarterbacks Coach
  • Bill Nesselt: Defensive Coordinator/Linebackers Coach
  • Joe Bernard: Special Teams Coordinator/Defensive Line Coach
  • Will Fiacchi: Wide Receivers Coach/Passing Game Coordinator/Recruiting Coordinator
  • Jordan Orlovsky: Running Backs Coach/Chief of Staff
  • Peter Davila: Safeties Coach
  • Darrin Walls: Co-Defensive Coordinator/Cornerbacks Coach
  • Chris Calabrese: Outside Linebackers Coach
  • Brendan Smith: Tight Ends Coach
  • Jacob Alsadek: Offensive Line Coach
  • Dion Lewis: Assistant Running Backs Coach
  • Jon Simmons: Director of Football Operations/Video Coordinator
  • Joe Costadina: Offensive Quality Control
  • Jake Kulig: Defensive Assistant
  • Matt Campion: Volunteer Offensive Coach

Categories: College Sports, Sports, Sports, UAlbany

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