Boston College has announced more coaching shakeups on the football staff under Steve Addazio, with former UConn and Syracuse head coach Paul Pasqualoni joining the Eagles as defensive line coach. Former BC wideout Rich Gunnel was also added to the staff as the wide receivers coach, replacing Todd Fitch, who departed for East Carolina.
In addition, tight ends coach Frank Leonard was elevated to assistant head coach while Al Walshington will co-coach the defensive line in addition to special teams. Ricky Brown, a former Eagle standout who played five season with the Oakland Raiders, was hired as the recruiting specialist/quality control coach.
The biggest name in the list is obviously Pasqualoni, who spent last season coaching the defensive line of the Houston Texans of the NFL. That came on the heels of a stint with the Chicago Bears in 2014 and his former head-coaching duties with Connecticut.
Hired by Syracuse to be their head coach in 1991, Pasqualoni led the Orange to three straight Big East championships from 1996-1998. The team earned a fourth championship in 2004, when they went 4-2 in conference despite a 6-6 record. They played in two BCS games when the '97 and '98 Orange went to the Fiesta and Orange bowls. He was fired from Syracuse following that 2004 season.
Pasqualoni couldn't replicate that success in Storrs, however, going 5-7 in his first two years with the Huskies. In 2013, the first year of the American Athletic Conference, he was fired after the team started 0-4.
The linebackers coach of the Dallas Cowboys, he was promoted to interim defensive coordinator in 2010 following the firing of Wade Phillips. Prior to that, he served as the defensive coordinator for the Miami Dolphins for the 2008 and 2009 seasons.
It should be noted that both Steve Addazio and Frank Leonard coached under Pasqualoni while coaching at the Division III Western Connecticut State program. Addazio coached the offensive line and served as the recruiting coordinator in 1985, while Leonard coached the defensive line between 1982 and 1984. New Boston College defensive coordinator Jim Reid coached under Pasqualoni during the latter's DC time with the Miami Dolphins.
As for Gunnel, he comes to Boston College after two years at Marian High School in Framingham, Massachusetts. A former graduate assistant for the Eagles in 2012 and 2013, he was a receiving stadnout for the Eagles, ranking third in program history for receptions and second for receiving yards. He is also fourth in career touchdowns.
With the moves, Frank Leonard is now elevated to the assistant head coach position, while Todd Fitch is removed as one of the coaches of the Eagles. In addition, Al Washington, who was named special teams coordinator in the offseason, will remain as a co-defensive line coach. Fitch was named offensive coordinator at Louisiana Tech under head coach Skip Holtz.