Jeff Devanney begins his 12th season as head football coach at Trinity College in 2017-18. Trinity hired Devanney, a 1993 graduate of the College, as its 27th head coach in December of 2005. He had been Trinity’s defensive coordinator in 2005, its special teams coordinator from 2001 to 2004, its secondary coach from 2002 to 2005, and its defensive line coach in 2001. Devanney has continued to coach the Bantam defensive backs each fall. In his rookie year at the helm, the Trinity defense surrendered just 54 points all season, and the Bantams have outscored their opponents, 2,014-861, in his 10-year tenure as head coach. In 2016, Trinity posted a perfect 8-0 record to win the NESCAC title for the eighth time in program history while Devanney was named as NESCAC Coach of the Year.
Devanney has a 75-13 record as a head coach that includes perfect 8-0 records in 2008, 2012 and 2016 and gives him the best winning percentage in the history of Trinity football at .852. The Bantams won or shared the NESCAC title from 2002 to 2005, in 2008, 2012 and 2016. Devanney was honored as the NESCAC Coach of the Year in 2008, 2012 and 2016, and also garnered the Gridiron Club's Division II/III New England Coach of the Year award in 2012. Devanney has seen 108 All-NESCAC selections from his teams the last nine years including the NESCAC Offensive and Defensive Player of the Year in 2008, the Defensive Player of the Year from 2010 to 2012 and again in 2016, and the NESCAC Rookie of the Year in three of the last four autumns. A Devanney-coached Trinity player has been selected to participate in a National Senior All-Star Games in Mexico, Maryland, and Virginia in 11 of the last 12 years.
In Devanney’s 15 years on the Bantam staff, Trinity has been ranked No. 1 in total defense in the country five times and posted 21 shutouts. Last fall, the team led the league in scoring (38.1 ppg) and finished second in the NESCAC in scoring average at 13.6 points allowed per game while scoring a league-high four defensive touchdowns. The Bantams also ranked third in yards allowed per game with under 265 per tilt, and were one of just two teams in the league to give up less than 100 rushing yards per game. The team was also tied for conference-bests with 14 interceptions and nine fumble recoveries. Trinity concluded the year ranked fourth nationally in first downs allowed, ninth nationally in scoring defense, fifth nationally in pass efficiency defense, sixth nationally in sacks and 12th nationally in total defense. In 2015, the Bantams ranked No. 1 in the nation in red-zone defense (.458), third in scoring defense (10.1 ppg allowed) and pass efficiency defense (87.05), ninth in total defense (253.3 ypg), and 10 nationally in rushing defense (90.3 ypg). In 2014, Trinity finished sixth nationally in pass efficiency defense with a 90.3 rating for opposing quarterbacks and led the country in kickoff return average with 28.1 yards per attempt. In 2013, the Bantams allowed just 13.9 ppg (9th in nation), yielded 138 yards through the air per game (5th in nation), rushed for 281 yards per game (7th in nation), and held opponents to 254.8 yards per game (8th in nation) and an 80.8 pass efficiency rating (3rd in nation). Three seasons ago, Trinity yielded an NCAA Division III-low 195.5 yards per contest, and surrendered an NCAA Division III-low 8.1 points per game, allowed an NCAA Division III-low 53.6 yards per game on the ground, and posted an 84.68 defensive pass efficiency rating (4th in nation). Trinity also led the nation statistically in rushing defense (63.5 ypg), total defense (195.5 g), and scoring defense (8.13 ppg) while posting four shutouts in 2011, and finished first in the nation in rushing defense (45.50 ypg) in 2010. In 2006, Trinity led the country in scoring defense and total defense, and finished second nationally in pass efficiency defense (73.2 opponent efficiency rating).
A star player in football and baseball for the College, Devanney was voted the NESCAC Football Defensive Player of the Year in 1992. He appears among the College’s all-time leaders in punt returns and stolen bases in baseball. Devanney earned his master’s degree in liberal studies from SUNY-Albany in 1995. Prior to Trinity, Devanney was the defensive coordinator at Central Connecticut State University from 1998-2000. He also served as a secondary coach at Georgia Tech and worked with the wide receivers and tight ends at Albany and Coast Guard. An associate professor in the Trinity athletic department, Devanney and his wife, Michele, their daughters, Shea and Caitlin, and their son, Sean, reside in Newington, Conn.