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Sal Sunseri
Sport(s) Football
Biographical details
Born (1959-08-01) August 1, 1959 (age 54)
Playing career
1978–1981 Pittsburgh
Position(s) Linebacker
Coaching career (HC unless noted)
Pittsburgh (DL/LB)
Iowa Wesleyan (AC)
Illinois State (DC)
Louisville (LB)
Alabama A&M (DC/LB)
Michigan State (LB/ST)
Carolina Panthers (DL)
Alabama (AHC/LB)
Tennessee (DC)
Florida State (DE)
Head coaching record
Overall 0–1
College Football Data Warehouse

Sal Sunseri (born August 1, 1959) is an American college and professional football coach. He is currently the defensive ends coach at Florida State. Sunseri played college football for the University of Pittsburgh, where he was an All-American linebacker.

Playing career[edit]

Sunseri attended the University of Pittsburgh, where he played for the Pittsburgh Panthers football team from 1978 to 1981.[1] He was a three-year starter and anchored a defense that led the NCAA in total defense in both 1980 and 1981.[1] During his senior year, he was named a team captain and a consensus first-team All-American.

After graduating he was selected by the Pittsburgh Steelers in the 1982 NFL Draft; however, he suffered a career ending knee injury during training camp[1][2] and was given an injury settlement and released from the team.

Coaching career[edit]

Between 1985 and 1992, Sunseri worked as a defensive line and linebacker's coach for his alma mater, the University of Pittsburgh.[3] After Paul Hackett was fired as the team's head coach during Pittsburgh's 1992 season,[4] Sunseri was promoted as an interim head coach for the final game versus Hawaiʻi[5]—a 36–23 loss for the Panthers.[6]

After having previously worked as the defensive line coach for the NFL's Carolina Panthers for six seasons,[1] Sunseri returned to college football on January 21, 2009, when he was named as the outside linebackers coach for the Alabama Crimson Tide football team.[7][8] In January 2012, days after winning his second national championship with Alabama, Sunseri left to join Derek Dooley's staff at Tennessee as the defensive coordinator.[9] Under Sunseri Tennessee suffered its worst statistical defensive effort in school history.

In December 2012, Sunseri accepted a job as a defensive assistant at Florida State University.[10]

Personal life[edit]

Sunseri is married to Roxann Sunseri (née Evans), who is a former varsity gymnast at Pittsburgh.[1] The couple has two daughters and two sons. His son, Tino also plays football for the Saskatchewan Roughriders of the CFL. His younger son, Vinnie, plays for the University of Alabama Crimson Tide. He contributed as a true freshman on the 2011 BCS National Championship team as a reserve safety and on special teams.[1][11]

Head coaching record[edit]

Year Team Overall Conference Standing Bowl/playoffs Coaches# AP°
Pittsburgh Panthers (Big East Conference) (1992)
1992 Pittsburgh 0–1 0–0
Toledo: 0–1 0–0
Total: 0–1
      National championship         Conference title         Conference division title
#Rankings from final Coaches' Poll.
°Rankings from final AP Poll.


  1. ^ a b c d e f "Sal Sunseri". Carolina Panthers. Retrieved 2009-02-18. [dead link]
  2. ^ Tuma, Gary (1983-05-24). "Sunseri, Fedell shooting for comeback with Steelers". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. p. 10. Retrieved 2009-02-18. 
  3. ^ Emery, Michael (1985-10-19). "Coach Sal Sunseri hopes to bring winning ways back to Pitt". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. p. 11. Retrieved 2009-02-18. 
  4. ^ Wolff, Alexander (1992-12-07). "Something For Nothing". Sports Illustrated. Retrieved 2009-02-18. 
  5. ^ "Sunseri named interim coach at Pitt". Philadelphia Inquirer. 1992-11-28. p. C03. 
  6. ^ "Pittsburgh Game by Game Results: 1992". College Football Data Warehouse. Retrieved 2009-02-18. 
  7. ^ Gantt, Darin (2009-01-20). "Panthers lose D-line coach Sunseri to Alabama". The Herald (Rock Hill, South Carolina). Retrieved 2009-02-18. [dead link]
  8. ^ Estes, Gentry (2009-01-21). "Alabama formally names Sal Sunseri and James Willis as new assistants". Mobile Press-Register (AL.com). Retrieved 2009-02-18. 
  9. ^ "Vols Name Sunseri Defensive Coordinator". UTSports.com. 2012-01-13. 
  10. ^ "Could Sal Sunseri join Florida State as a position coach?". Tomahawknation.com. Retrieved 2012-12-16. 
  11. ^ "Tino Sunseri". University of Pittsburgh Athletics. Retrieved 2009-02-18. 

External links[edit]

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sal_Sunseri — Please support Wikipedia.
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4198 videos foundNext > 

Sal Sunseri Interview: March 20

Courtesy of http://www.seminoles.com: Hear from Florida State's new defensive ends coach, Sal Sunseri.

#VolReport: Sal Sunseri Media Session (8/8/12)

VolReport: Sal Sunseri Media Session (8/8/12)

Sal Sunseri coaches Alabama linebackers 2011

http://dailybamablog.com/ Crimson Tide preparing for Nov. 5 game with No. 1 LSU.

Warchant.com's Gene Williams talks to Sal Sunseri

Florida State defensive ends coach Sal Sunseri talks to Gene Williams at the BCS National Championship media day. Warchant.com is our ultimate Seminole Sport...

Sal Sunseri working with Kengera Daniel

From Jimbo Fisher Camp.

Alabama coach Sal Sunseri coaches loud

http://dailybamablog.com/ for more. Alabama linebackers coach Sal Sunseri works with the 2010 Crimson Tide during practices throughout the season.


Assistant Coach Sal Sunseri at Bama football practice 8/9/09.

Dooley talks about new defensive coordinator Sal Sunseri

Tennessee announced it had hired Sal Sunseri as its new defensive coordinator on Friday, Jan. 13, 2012. Head coach Derek Dooley spoke about Sunseri at a pres...

Fallon Smith: Sal Sunseri PKG for PreSeason Special: PrePro


Sal Sunseri Media Session (4/11/12)

Sal Sunseri Media Session (4/11/12). Vols Defensive Coordinator meets with media after Practice No. 9.

4198 videos foundNext > 

25 news items

Tue, 08 Apr 2014 11:35:25 -0700

He father Sal Sunseri, a former Alabama assistant currently with Florida State, said Vinnie was two months ahead of schedule in a January interview with AL.com. "Dr. (Lyle) Cain tested him and said if he was a senior, he would OK him to play," Sal ...


Fri, 18 Apr 2014 07:03:49 -0700

... the spill WWL-TV wanted to know just how the Louisiana seafood industry is doing. Sal Sunseri, owner of P&J Oyster Company and a broad member for the Louisiana Seafood Promotion and Marketing Board joins the Eyewitness Morning News with more.

Bleacher Report

Bleacher Report
Wed, 23 Apr 2014 10:31:21 -0700

Defensive coordinator Kirby Smart, Kevin Steele and Lance Thompson are all proven when it comes to recruiting, as were Mike Groh, Jeremy Pruitt and Sal Sunseri before they moved on to bigger jobs. Offensive coordinator Lane Kiffin, Burton Burns and ...

ESPN (blog)

ESPN (blog)
Thu, 27 Mar 2014 10:02:02 -0700

An outside linebacker in the Vols' old 3-4 scheme under Sal Sunseri in 2012, Maggitt will line up just about everywhere next season. He'll spend a good bit of time with his hand down and rushing the passer at defensive end, but the Vols will use his ...
Rocky Top Talk
Sat, 12 Apr 2014 16:57:27 -0700

It did not work well for Sal Sunseri, but I think we're dealing with better material this time around. Managing the offense effectively at a fast pace could be another reason to go with Worley. If Tennessee struggles to stop power running games this ...

Bleacher Report

Bleacher Report
Tue, 15 Apr 2014 10:53:54 -0700

UT's offense gashed the reserve defenders as if Sal Sunseri was still coaching them. UT's first-team defense has some talent, and it will be even better when defensive tackle Trevarris Saulsberry and safety Brian Randolph return from injuries. The ...
Wed, 26 Mar 2014 09:30:52 -0700

In fact, Patti credits McConnell and his relationship with FSU assistant Sal Sunseri with opening the door at Florida State. "My trainer is friends with Coach Sal and he got them my highlight tape, and they liked it," Patti said. "I've been smiling for ...
Buffalo News
Fri, 28 Mar 2014 19:48:02 -0700

When Lewis was at Michigan State as a graduate assistant, head coach Bobby Williams showed him the ropes, as did assistants Bill Miller and Sal Sunseri, who are now on the staff at Florida State. “Getting to see those guys who have been in the ...

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