Doug Mandigo named Panther football coach

DOUG MANDIGO, SHOWN working on the sidelines as defensive coordinator for the Middlebury College football team this fall, on Sunday was named head coach for Panther football. Photo by Will Costello/Middlebury Sports Information

MIDDLEBURY — Middlebury College on Sunday named 1996 alumnus Doug Mandigo as the next head coach of the Panther football team.

Mandigo, who has been the team’s defensive coordinator since 2011, served as the program’s associate head coach this past fall as part what the school’s athletic department called a planned leadership transition after longtime Head Coach Bob Ritter announced he would step down after the season.

Panther Athletic Director Erin Quinn, in a press release, said Mandigo stood out as the right choice for the position.

“Doug Mandigo has been an outstanding defensive coordinator and mentor to his student-athletes at Middlebury,” Quinn said. “He is the best person to continue the tradition of excellence on and off the field that began with Mickey Heinecken and continued with Bob Ritter. We are excited to see where he and his staff take the football program in the years to come.”

Mandigo began his coaching career at Middlebury following his graduation in 1996, serving as a three-sport assistant coach (football, baseball and women’s ice hockey). He had brief stints at high schools, colleges and the United Football League (UFL) before returning to Middlebury in 2011 as the defensive coordinator.

Mandigo has coached three NESCAC Championship teams and two NESCAC Defensive Players of the Year and helped lead the Panthers to a 7-2 record and a second-place finish in NESCAC this fall.

He said he felt it was privilege to be chosen.

“It is a tremendous honor to follow the legacy of Coach Heinecken and Coach Ritter and become the next head football coach at Middlebury College,” he said.

“Middlebury is a special place to be a student-athlete, and I am extremely excited to continue mentoring and developing the remarkable group of student-athletes in the football program. I want to thank Director of Athletics Erin Quinn, Coach Ritter, President Laurie Patton and the entire Middlebury community for this opportunity.”

While a student at Middlebury in the 1990s, Mandigo was a a three-sport athlete (football, ice hockey and baseball). After his post-graduate year as an assistant at Middlebury. Mandigo spent two years (1997, 1998) at Saint Anselm College as the defensive coordinator before coaching at Boston College for two seasons (1999, 2000) while earning his master’s degree. He returned to Middlebury as an assistant coach for three years before coaching high school football in California for a year. Mandigo returned to the NESCAC in 2006 and worked as the defensive coordinator for four seasons at Wesleyan University before returning to his alma mater in 2010.

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