Boston College has hired UConn’s Don Brown to be its new defensive coordinator, new coach Steve Addazio announced Wednesday.
“We’re very excited to have Don Brown joining our Boston College family,” Addazio said in a statement. “Don is a New England guy who has tremendous ties and relationships in the Northeast to go along with a great coaching resume.”
Brown, who spent the past two seasons as the defensive coordinator for Paul Pasqualoni, has deep roots in the Northeast.
The Spencer, Mass., native has been a head coach three times -- at Plymouth State (1993 to 1995), Northeastern (2000 to 2003) and UMass (2004 to 2008). He also has ties to the ACC, as he was the defensive coordinator at Maryland for the two seasons (2009-10) prior to joining the staff at UConn.
“He has tremendous character and is a great family man who is a perfect fit here at Boston College,” Addazio said.
Brown, 57, will take over a BC defense that was in disarray in 2012. The Eagles finished 113th in the country in rushing defense, 73rd in passing defense, 75th in scoring defense and 102nd in total defense in Frank Spaziani’s last season in the Heights, according to cfbstats.com.
“Coach Addazio has presented me with a great challenge -- one that I am very excited about,” Brown said in the statement. “I’m excited to be back in the ACC. The positive thing for me is that I’m a New England guy. I’m from Massachusetts. Coaching at Boston College has always been a wish of mine.”
As for philosophy, Brown’s approach may be music to the ears of Eagles fans.
“I’m a firm believer that you play the game on the balls of your feet, not on your heels. From day one, we’re going to be aggressive,” he said. “We’re going to attack the line of scrimmage. We’re going to get after the quarterback. We’re going to play with our hair on fire on defense. I’m a big believer in playing for tackles for loss and being disruptive and making life difficult for the quarterback. We’re going to attack. That’s the style of defense that I’ve employed. We’re going to fly around and attack the pass.”
While at UConn, Brown led a turnaround on D. The Huskies went from 58th in total defense in 2010, the year before he was hired, to 51st in 2011 and 10th in 2012.
The Huskies ranked seventh in the country in rushing defense in 2012, allowing an average of just 97.92 yards a game.
Brown’s defense also proved capable of getting to the quarterback, with 33 sacks in 2012 -- good for a tie for 19th in the country. BC finished dead last, 124th, with just six sacks in 2012.
Addazio also officially announced the hiring of Ryan Day as offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach.
New athletic director Brad Bates praised Addazio’s hires on Twitter on Wednesday, writing: “Coach Addazio assembling excellent staff. Ryan Day and Don Brown will be terrific coordinators.”
The news also made its way to defensive lineman Connor Wujciak, who said via Twitter:
Don Brown as Defensive Cordinator??? Wow I am PUMPED.
— Connor Wujciak (@Wuj90) December 19, 2012
Jack McCluskey is an editor for ESPN.com and a frequent contributor to ESPNBoston.com. Follow him on Twitter @jack_mccluskey.