USF’s Donley named NAIA Coach of the Year for Second Year

January 10, 2018

FORT WAYNE, Ind. – University of Saint Francis Head Coach Kevin Donley has been named American Football Coaches Association NAIA Coach of the Year going back-to-back thanks to his 14-0 Cougars, who won their second consecutive NAIA FCS Championship in 2017.

The winners were announced today at the AFCA Victory Luncheon during the 2018 AFCA Convention. They were also  honored at the inaugural American Football Coaches Awards show, to be televised live tonight on CBS Sports Network at 9 PM EST.

“It’s a great thing to be voted National Coach of the Year by your peers,” Donley said. “I’m quite honored by it, but we are all about team. It’s about building a team. This is a tribute to our players and our coaches.”

Donley’s 20th USF team was ranked No. 1 the entire 2017 season and the Cougars finished the programs’ as well as Donley’s first perfect season with a 24-13 win over previously unbeaten, second-ranked Reinhardt University (Ga.) on Dec. 16, 2017 in Daytona Beach, Fla. It was Donley’s 316th career win, which ranks ninth on the career collegiate coaching wins list and the most wins by any active collegiate coach. USF senior quarterback Nick Ferrer led the Cougars to back-to-back titles, a USF and Mid-States Football Association record 23 consecutive wins and was named NAIA Player of the Year under Donley’s guidance.

USF set a record for wins in a season by an Indiana collegiate program and posted the first undefeated season by a collegiate team from Indiana since the University of Notre Dame finished 12-0 in 1988 when the Fighting Irish were NCAA Champions.

USF will have a community-wide celebration honoring Donley and the national champion Cougars at Hutzell Athletic Center on Tues., Jan. 16, starting at noon.

Founded in 1890 in the Catholic Franciscan tradition, the University of Saint Francis offers more than 70 undergraduate, graduate and doctoral programs through the School of Health Sciences, School of Liberal Arts and Sciences, Keith Busse School of Business and Entrepreneurial Leadership and School of Creative Arts. In addition to its traditional programs, USF designs focused curricula for working adults in Fort Wayne, Crown Point and online. In 2016, the University of Saint Francis expanded its presence to downtown Fort Wayne. USF Downtown houses the university’s business and music technology programs while offering enhanced internship and networking opportunities for students. The University of Saint Francis campus experience includes 16 athletic programs boasting two individual and four team NAIA national championships, and is recognized as an NAIA Five-Star Champion of Character institution. Approximately 2,300 students from a broad geographic region attend USF.