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FIU names Miami native Mike MacIntyre as head football coach

FIU names Miami native Mike MacIntyre as head football coach

MacIntyre boasts over 30 years of coaching experience and is a two-time National Coach of the Year honoree

December 9, 2021 at 9:01am

Following a national search, FIU has named two-time national coach of the year Mike MacIntyre as the sixth head coach of the football program, FIU Athletic Director Scott Carr announced on Thursday.

A Miami native, MacIntyre was born in the Magic City and resided in the area while his father was an assistant coach for the University of Miami.

“Throughout this process, Coach MacIntyre rose to the top,” Carr said. “He has a passion for student-athletes and building genuine relationships with them. He’s a builder, with proven success taking two struggling programs and elevating them to national relevance. He is a two-time national coach of the year. He’s a brand builder who will promote FIU throughout the South Florida community and the state of Florida. We could not be more excited to bring his energy and passion to campus.”

“It is exciting to have the opportunity to come back to Miami,” MacIntyre said. “Not only was I born here but the roots of my family’s love for football and mentoring young people started here with my Dad. There is so much talent and passion for football in our area. I can’t wait to get started building a strong foundation for our program. I believe that together we will create something special to rally around, inspiring Panther pride in everyone associated with FIU and our community."

MacIntyre is a 32-year veteran of collegiate coaching and has previously served as the head coach at the University of Colorado (2013-18) and San Jose State University (2010-12) – where he led both programs to nationally recognized turnarounds in wins during his tenure. MacIntyre also has experience coaching in the NFL under legendary coach Bill Parcells.

He was the consensus national coach of the year in 2016 after guiding Colorado to a 10-4 finish and the Pac-12 South Division Title. While with San Jose State, MacIntyre led the Spartans to the program’s first ranking in the final BCS standings (No. 24) following a 10-2 mark in 2012.

“Coach MacIntyre is high energy, passionate about student-athlete success and happy to be back home in Miami,” FIU President Mark B. Rosenberg said.

MacIntyre arrives at FIU after holding the position of defensive coordinator at Memphis for each of the previous two seasons (2020-21). 

The 2021 season saw MacIntyre’s defense lead the American Athletic Conference in defensive touchdowns and ranked 23rd nationally.

During the 2020 campaign under MacIntyre, the Tigers ranked 13th in the nation in turnovers gained (20), 17th in the country in interceptions (12) and 19th in red zone defense (.744). 

Under his guidance, Memphis defensive lineman O’Bryan Goodson was named First-Team All-American Athletic Conference and defensive back Quindell Johnson earned second-team all-conference accolades.  Defensive lineman Morris Joseph earned honorable-mention all-league.

MacIntyre spent the 2019 season as Ole Miss’ defensive coordinator and did a tremendous job in turning around the defense in his lone campaign in Oxford, Miss. It was MacIntyre’s second stint at Ole Miss, as he also coached there from 1999-02.

Ole Miss made impressive jumps in several defensive statistical categories. The Rebels held opponents to nearly 10 fewer points in 2019 than in 2018 and also held foes to nearly 100 fewer rushing yards per game over those same two seasons.

Ole Miss’ total defense under MacIntyre jumped nearly 40 spots in the NCAA rankings. The Rebels limited opponents to just under 70 fewer total yards per game.

MacIntyre has made turnarounds a trademark of his career, which was evident in his six seasons as the head coach at Colorado. In 2013, he took over a Colorado team that was coming off a 1-11 season. Four years later he directed the Buffs to a 10-4 mark and their first appearance in the Pac-12 Championship Game.

In 2016, Colorado was tied with five other programs for the most improved overall nationally and the most improved all-time in Pac-12 league games. The Buffaloes became just the ninth team among Power-5 schools since 1972 to win 10 or more games after finishing the previous season with four or fewer wins.

For his efforts in 2016, MacIntyre earned consensus National Coach of the Year honors after leading the Buffaloes to their first 10-win season in 15 years.

In 2015, the Buffs defense improved by as many as 50 spots nationally in many major defensive areas. The biggest jump came in points allowed per game, slicing off 11.5 from the previous year, the fifth-best improvement in all of FBS.

The turnaround at Colorado came just a few years after MacIntyre similarly resuscitated a San Jose State team from a 1-12 record in 2010 to one that finished 10-2 in 2012 and was nationally ranked. MacIntyre garnered Grant Teaff National Coach of the Year recognition that season. His San Jose State teams won 12 of his final 14 games there.

In recording their first 10-win season since 1987, the Spartans did it with a defense that ranked among the national leaders in numerous statistical categories. The opportunistic Spartans were the co-national leaders with 20 fumble recoveries and were tied for fourth in turnovers gained (33).

MacIntyre arrived at San Jose State after two years as the defensive coordinator at Duke, where he was reunited with David Cutcliffe, who was the Rebels’ coach during MacIntyre’s first stint in Oxford.

In his first season in Durham (2008), the Blue Devils allowed 67.4 fewer yards and 9.8 fewer points per game than the previous season. The AFCA named MacIntyre its 2009 FBS Assistant Coach of the Year as his defenses were among Duke’s best statistically over a 20-year span.

Prior to returning to college ball, MacIntyre spent five seasons in the National Football League with the New York Jets (2007) and Dallas Cowboys (2003-06), where he coached defensive backs. Working for legendary coach Bill Parcells, the Cowboys returned to the NFL playoffs in 2003 and again in 2006 after missing out on postseason competition during the 2000 through 2002 seasons.

MacIntyre served as Ole Miss’ secondary coach during the 2001 and 2002 seasons after spending his first two years in Oxford as the wide receivers coach. The Rebels posted a 29-19 record in that time with bowl appearances in the 1999 and 2002 Independence Bowls and the 2000 Music City Bowl. The 2001 Rebels ranked fifth nationally in pass defense, allowing just 161.3 yards per game.

At Ole Miss, among his recruits were two high-profile student-athletes, quarterback Eli Manning and linebacker Patrick Willis. He has mentored many current and former NFL players, including recently retired former Dallas and Cincinnati safety Roy Williams, a five-time Pro Bowl player.

He began his coaching career as a graduate assistant at Georgia, working two years (1990-91) in that capacity. He then coached one year as the defensive coordinator at Davidson (1992), four years at UT Martin (1993-96) and an assistant coach two seasons at Temple (1997-98).

A 1989 Georgia Tech graduate, he lettered twice (1987-88) at free safety and punt returner for legendary head coach Bobby Ross. Prior to becoming a Yellow Jacket, MacIntyre played two seasons (1984-85) at Vanderbilt for his father, George, the head coach of the Commodores from 1979-85.

MacIntyre earned a bachelor’s degree in business management from Georgia Tech and his master’s in education with an emphasis on sports management from Georgia in 1991.

MacIntyre and his wife, Trisha, have three children: Jennifer, Jay and Jonston.


MacIntyre Specifics

Alma Mater                            Georgia Tech University, 1989

                                                University of Georgia, 1991

Playing Experience               Vanderbilt University (1984-85)

                                                Played two seasons for his father, George, the head coach
                                               of the Commodores from 1979-85                                          

                                               Georgia Tech University (1987-88)

                                               Lettered twice at free safety and punt
                                               returner for legendary head coach Bobby Ross

Family                                   Wife - Trisha

                                              Children – Jennifer (Blake – Son-In-Law), Jay and Jonston

Coaching Experience

University of Georgia                                      Graduate Assistant (1990-91)

Davidson College                                            Defensive Coordinator (1992)

University of Tennessee at Martin                Defensive Coordinator (1993-96)

Temple University                                            Assistant Coach, Defensive Backs (1997-98)

University of Mississippi                               Assistant Coach, Wide Receivers (1999-2000)

                                                                          Assistant Coach, Defensive Backs (2001-02)

                                                                          Defensive Coordinator (2019)

Dallas Cowboys                                              Assistant Coach, Defensive Backs (2003-06)

New York Jets                                                 Assistant Coach, Defensive Backs (2007)

Duke University                                               Defensive Coordinator (2008-09)

San Jose State University                             Head Coach (2010-12)

University of Colorado                                   Head Coach (2013-18)

University of Memphis                                   Defensive Coordinator (2020-21)


Bowl Coaching Experience

1990              Independence Bowl

1999              Independence Bowl

2000              Music City Bowl

2002              Independence Bowl

2012              Military Bowl

2016              Alamo Bowl

2020              Montgomery Bowl

2021              Hawaii Bowl



2009              AFCA FBS Assistant Coach of the Year

2012              Grant Teaff National Coach of the Year

2016              Consensus National Coach of the Year Awards



A Miami native, head coach Mike MacIntyre made his homecoming official today with a press conference in the Graham Center Pit. Check out the video on FIU Athletics' Facebook.


Contact for FIU Football: Randy Press (