Jeff Quinn Named Notre Dame Offensive Line Coach

Author: Ami Driscoll

Quinn has coached 12 offensive lineman who have played in the NFL and 22 who have earned All-America honors

Jan. 23, 2018

NOTRE DAME, Indiana - Jeff Quinn, who previously coached recent NFL All-Pro selections Jason Kelce, Joe Staley and Khalil Mack, has been named offensive line coach for the University of Notre Dame.

“I’m thankful to Father Jenkins, Jack Swarbrick and Coach Kelly for this tremendous opportunity,” said Quinn. “There’s a tremendous legacy of coaching the offensive line at Notre Dame, from Brian Boulac to Merv Johnson to Joe Moore to Harry Hiestand. As each of those men will tell you, the focus of this job has been and always will be about the best interests of the players in the offensive line room, both on and off the field. I’m simply honored to now serve in this role.”

“Jeff has helped produce NCAA, conference and school record-breaking offenses along with multiple conference, bowl and national championships over his 34 years as a college football coach,” said Brian Kelly, Dick Corbett Head Football Coach at the University of Notre Dame. “He has an accomplished track record of not only identifying but also developing outstanding offensive linemen. Jeff also understands the high standard of offensive line play at Notre Dame, having been part of the offensive staff the last few years. He will continue to develop the culture necessary to produce college football’s top offensive line.”

Quinn will enter his fourth season at Notre Dame in 2018. He served the last three years in a variety of roles, including most recently as senior offensive analyst.

Quinn’s highest-profile offensive line protégées include Philadelphia Eagles center Jason Kelce and San Francisco 49ers left tackle Joe Staley.

Kelce — starting center for the 2017 NFC Champion Eagles — has been selected to a pair of NFL Pro Bowls (2014, 2016) and twice has been named All-Pro (2013, 2017). In 2011, he became the first rookie in team history to start every game at center and first Eagles rookie offensive lineman to start all 16 games since Doug Brzezineski (1999). In 2014, Kelce was the first Eagles center named to the Pro Bowl since Jim Ringo after the 1967 campaign. 

A former walk-on linebacker that converted to offensive line, Kelce was a two-time All-BIG EAST Conference performer at both guard and center at Cincinnati. He started the last 38 games of his collegiate career before the Eagles selected him in the sixth round of the 2011 NFL Draft.

Staley — 11th year starting left tackle for the 49ers — has been selected to six NFL Pro Bowls (2011-15, 2017) and three times has been named All-Pro (2011-13). In 2007, he became the first San Francisco rookie offensive lineman to start every single game in a season since Cas Banaszek in 1968. Staley was one of three NFL rookies and two offensive linemen (Cleveland Browns left tackle Joe Thomas) to line up for every single snap in 2007. In both 2015 and 2016, he was one of eight finalists for the annual Art Rooney Sportsmanship Award, presented annually to the NFL player who best demonstrates the qualities of on-field sportsmanship, including fair play, respect for the game and opponents, and integrity in competition.

Staley arrived on Central Michigan’s campus as a 225-pound tight end in 2003, but prior to his sophomore season, Quinn and Kelly asked him to make the switch to offensive tackle. In the first offseason, Staley added 20 pounds to his lean frame. By the time he was a senior, he reached 300 pounds and recorded the fastest 40-yard dash time (4.7) of any offensive lineman at the 2007 NFL Combine. Staley went on to become the first player in school history to be drafted in the first round of the NFL Draft. He played in 46 games (39 starts) at Central Michigan and helped the Chippewas produce a 1,000-yard rusher in three of his four seasons, while also allowing just one sack over his last two years.

Prior to his tenure at Notre Dame, Quinn served as the head coach at the University at Buffalo from 2010-14, which included a 2013 campaign that saw the Bulls finish with an 8-5 record. The eight wins equalled the most for Buffalo in the regular season since it moved to the Football Bowl Subdivision in 1999. The Bulls also won a school-record six Mid-American Conference games and registered a seven-game winning streak in 2013. The Bulls participated in the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl — the program’s second bowl appearance.

Quinn had three of his players selected in the National Football League draft, including linebacker Khalil Mack, who was chosen fifth overall by the Oakland Raiders in 2014. Mack was the highest NFL Draft pick in school history and the highest defensive player ever selected from the Mid-American Conference. Quinn’s teams also performed well in the classroom as Buffalo recorded the best overall GPA and APR ranking in program history during his tenure.

As offensive coordinator and offensive line coach at Cincinnati (2007-2009), Quinn helped the Bearcats to a 12-0 regular-season record in 2009 and served as the interim head coach for the Sugar Bowl meeting with defending national champion Florida.

Quinn was named a finalist for the 2009 Broyles Award, which is given to the nation’s top assistant coach. Unranked in preseason polls, Cincinnati’s undefeated regular season catapulted the Bearcats to No. 3 in the BCS standings and earned them an invitation to the Sugar Bowl, the school’s second consecutive BCS game.

Prior to his stint at Cincinnati, Quinn was the associate head coach and offensive coordinator at Central Michigan. He helped the Chippewas to the 2006 MAC title. Quinn served as interim head coach for Central Michigan in its 31-14 victory over Middle Tennessee in the 2006 Motor City Bowl.

Quinn arrived at CMU in 2004 after 15 seasons at Grand Valley State. He was part of the staff that led the Lakers to back-to-back national championships in 2002 and 2003.

Quinn is a 1984 graduate of Elmhurst College where he was a two-sport standout in football and wrestling. He was twice named Student-Athlete of the Year at Elmhurst. Quinn was inducted into Elmhurst’s Athletic Hall of Fame in 1993.

Quinn earned a master of arts degree from DePauw in 1986 and an educational leadership master’s degree endorsement from GVSU in 2000.

Quinn and his wife, Shannon, have two sons, Kyle and Ryan.

The Quinn File

Hometown: Woodridge, Illinois
College: Elmhurst College (B.A., Physical Education, 1984) / DePauw (M.A., Physical Education, 1986)
Wife: Shannon
Children: Kyle (married to Isabel) and Ryan

Playing Career

1980-84 Elmhurst Football
1980-84 Elmhurst Wrestling

Coaching Career

1984-85 DePauw Graduate Assistant (Assistant Offensive Line), Graduate Assistant (Offensive Line)
1986-88 Ohio Northern Offensive Line/Tight Ends
1989-2003 Grand Valley State Offensive Line/Tight Ends, Offensive Coordinator, Associate Head Coach/Recruiting Coordinator 
2004-06 Central Michigan Offensive Line, Offensive Coordinator, Associate Head Coach
2007-09 Cincinnati Offensive Coordinator/Offensive Line
2010-14 Buffalo Head Coach
2015-17 Notre Dame Offensive Analyst, Assistant Strength and Conditioning Coach, Senior Offensive Analyst

Bowls/Playoffs Coached

1989 NCAA Division II Playoffs
1990 NCAA Division II Playoffs
1991 NCAA Division II Playoffs
1994 NCAA Division II Playoffs
1998 NCAA Division II Playoffs
2001 NCAA Division II Runner-up
2002 NCAA Division II National Champions
2003 NCAA Division II National Champions
2006 Motor City
2006 International
2009 Orange
2010 Sugar
2013 Famous Idaho Potato
2015 Fiesta
2017 Citrus

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