Talley becomes 56th college coach to reach 200 wins

David Cassilo

With Homecoming Weekend making Villanova as busy as ever, President Father Peter Donohue could have been anywhere on campus at 7 p.m. on Saturday night. His choice? To congratulate football Head Coach Andy Talley on his 200th career win.

“He had a list of 10,000 things to do, but he made sure he was here to congratulate me, which is pretty special,” Talley said.

For Talley, it was an accomplishment worth congratulations. The 36-7 win over Rhode Island made him the 56th coach in college football history to reach the 200-win mark. Talley did it in his 30th season of coaching, 25 of which have come at Villanova where he has amassed a 172-102-1 record. Prior to Villanova, he coached at St. Lawrence from 1979-83, where he obtained a record of 28-18-1, making the Division III semfinals once.

After the game, Talley was quick to downplay the significance of the win, saying, “The playoffs and a championship are more important to me right now.” But the humble coach made sure to give credit to some of the people who have helped him reach his latest milestone.

“I have terrific players, terrific coaches and a great place to coach,” Talley said. “What more could I ask for?”

This year’s team could be the greatest bunch of players to ever play under Talley, as their 7-1 start has brought Villanova to a No. 4 ranking.

As their coach has put them in position to win a national championship this season, the players felt a little extra motivation to help Talley achieve his latest accolade, even if he never addressed it himself.

“I wasn’t aware of it until I read the paper on Friday,” said junior quarterback Chris Whitney. “I think it gives an extra push to all of us to give back to him what he has given to us.”

No. 200 is just the most recent addition to what has been an impressive coaching career for Talley. Last season, he became the winningest coach in CAA history when the Wildcats defeated New Hampshire on Nov. 8. Talley is also the 2008 Field Turf/Howie Long FCS National Coach of the Year and the 1997 AFCA/GTE National Coach of the Year.

Although he has accomplished a great deal in his 30 seasons, Talley is not ready to sit back and reflect on everything he has done. That job, he jokes, can be left for his successor.

“Whoever the next guy is in 2080, let him worry about it because I’m not going to.”