Danny Rocco
Biographical details
Born (1960-07-16) July 16, 1960 (age 61)
Huntingdon, Pennsylvania
Playing career
1979–1980Penn State
1981–1983Wake Forest
Coaching career (HC unless noted)
1984–1985Wake Forest (GA)
1986Wake Forest (DL)
1987Colorado (MLB)
1988–1990Tulsa (OLB)
1991–1993Boston College (DL)
1994–1996Texas (OLB)
1997Texas (ST/DE)
1998–1999Maryland (OLB)
2000New York Jets (ST)
2001–2005Virginia (LB)
Head coaching record
Accomplishments and honors
4 Big South (2007–2010)
3 CAA (2012, 2015, 2020)
3x Big South Coach of the Year (2006–2008)
2x CAA Coach of the Year (2015, 2020)

Daniel Christopher Rocco (born July 16, 1960)[1] is an American football coach, most recently head coach of the Delaware Fightin' Blue Hens college football team. Rocco has previously been the head coach of the Liberty Flames and Richmond Spiders. He is also a former assistant coach of the New York Jets of the National Football League (NFL). Rocco earned his bachelor's degree in speech communication from Wake Forest University in 1984. He added an education and counseling master's degree from Wake Forest in 1987.

Playing career

Rocco played linebacker for Joe Paterno at Pennsylvania State University, earning letters in 1979 and 1980. He played in the 1979 Liberty Bowl and the 1980 Fiesta Bowl for the Nittany Lions. Rocco transferred to Wake Forest University, where he started for two seasons at outside linebacker under head coach Al Groh, in 1982 and 1983. He was named captain of the 1983 Wake Forest Demon Deacons football team.[1]

Coaching career

Throughout his coaching career, Rocco has been a friend and protégé of Al Groh, working with him for over six years in both collegiate and professional positions.

Rocco began his coaching career as a graduate assistant then defensive line coach at Wake Forest, from 1984 to 1986. After a season coaching linebackers at the University of Colorado at Boulder under Bill McCartney, he spent three seasons at the University of Tulsa. Next stop for Rocco was Boston College for three years under Tom Coughlin as defensive line coach.[2]


Rocco was named the head coach of the Flames on December 2, 2005, succeeding Ken Karcher. He began his first stint as a head coach at any level taking over a program that went 1–10 the season before he arrived in 2005.[2]

In his first season as head coach at Liberty in 2006, he led the Flames to a 6–5 record and was honored by the Big South Conference as their Coach of the Year. He then followed that up in 2007 by leading the Flames to an 8–3 record and the school's first Big South Conference championship and his second consecutive Coach of the Year honors.

In February 2008, the university extended Rocco's contract through the 2012 season.[3]

He then followed that up with another Big South championship in 2008 with a 5–0 record in league play. He was named Big South Coach of the Year for the third straight season.

In 2009, he stretched the Flames' Big South winning streak to a conference record 15 games before falling in the season finale at Stony Brook. Liberty shared the conference championship with the Seawolves. In 2010, a loss at Coastal Carolina led to a three-way share of the league title with the Chanticleers and Stony Brook. But CCU went to the playoffs based on a tie-breaker of point allowed in conference games.

In January 2010, Rocco signed a two-year contract extension through the 2014 season.[4]

On December 6, 2011, Rocco was named head coach at the University of Richmond.[5]

On December 13, 2016, Rocco was named head coach at the University of Delaware. Rocco coached Delaware to a 31-23 record over five seasons. He was fired after a disappointing 2021 campaign that saw his team finish 5-6.[6]

Head coaching record

Year Team Overall Conference Standing Bowl/playoffs Coaches# TSN/STATS°
Liberty Flames (Big South Conference) (2006–2011)
2006 Liberty 6–5 2–2 3rd
2007 Liberty 8–3 4–0 1st
2008 Liberty 10–2 5–0 1st 15 14
2009 Liberty 8–3 5–1 1st 21 22
2010 Liberty 8–3 5–1 1st 15 17
2011 Liberty 7–4 5–1 2nd 25 25
Liberty: 47–20 26–5
Richmond Spiders (Colonial Athletic Association) (2012–2016)
2012 Richmond 8–3 6–2 T–1st 18 18
2013 Richmond 6–6 4–4 T–5th
2014 Richmond 9–5 5–3 4th L NCAA Division I Second Round 16 16
2015 Richmond 10–4 6–2 T–1st L NCAA Division I Semifinal 3 4
2016 Richmond 10–4 5–3 T–4th L NCAA Division I Quarterfinal 8 8
Richmond: 43–22 26–14
Delaware Fightin' Blue Hens (Colonial Athletic Association) (2017–2021)
2017 Delaware 7–4 5–3 T–4th
2018 Delaware 7–5 5–3 T–3rd L NCAA Division I First Round 23 24
2019 Delaware 5–7 3–5 T–9th
2020 Delaware 7–1 4–0 1st (North) L NCAA Division I Semifinal 4 4
2021 Delaware 5–6 3–5 T–9th
Delaware: 31–23 20–16
Total: 121–65
      National championship         Conference title         Conference division title or championship game berth


  1. ^ a b 1995 University of Texas Football Media Guide p. 94
  2. ^ a b "Coaching staff – Danny Rocco". Retrieved November 22, 2007.
  3. ^ "Lynchburg NewsAdvance Article on Contract Extension". Archived from the original on March 6, 2008. Retrieved February 15, 2008.
  4. ^ "LU Official News Release on Extension". Archived from the original on February 26, 2012. Retrieved January 21, 2010.
  5. ^ "Danny Rocco Named 35th Head Football Coach At Richmond". Retrieved December 6, 2011.
  6. ^ Tresolini, Kevin. "Danny Rocco fired as University of Delaware football coach". The News Journal. Retrieved 2021-11-29.