After 10 years as the head coach of Division I St. Francis University in Pennsylvania, Patrick Gallagher has returned to Cornell University, where he started his college career in 2001 as an assistant for two years.
What makes this move really interesting is the success that Gallagher has had in a decade as a head coach. He was named the Northeast Conference Coach of the Year in 2010 and 2012, and won the last four conference championships. That’s a program that has come a long way, as they placed 11th in Gallagher’s first season there.
What’s more is that he fits well into the Ivy League mold of education; while winning those four-straight conference titles, his team has been named to the CSCAA All-American list for their lofty GPA’s eight of the last ten semesters.
“Pat adds a strong dimension to our coaching staff. His 10 years of head coaching experience at Saint Francis University is a valuable asset to our program,” head coach Joe Lucia said. “He built a championship team and that is done through successful recruiting and strong leadership. Pat knows Cornell and the Ivy League as this is where he got his start in collegiate coaching. He brings not only a wealth of experience, but also high positive energy which benefits everyone on the staff and team. I am thrilled and feel a bit lucky and very fortunate to have him and his wife, Meg, joining the team.”
Lucia has been the coach of the Cornell men’s program for 23 years, and took over the women’s program a few years ago when the programs were re-combined.
Head coach Joe Lucia has confirmed that this is not a “head coach in waiting” situation, and that the move was as much for family reasons as professional ones. Lucia says that he has no plans on retiring anytime soon, and loves the environment of the Ivy League.
“Coaching in the league is fun and we feel we put out a strong product and competitive experience,” Lucia said. There are great people to work with here at Cornell and the other head coaches in the league are fantastic people who are competitive but I really have so much fun being around them and get lots of laughs. Makes it hard to leave when you enjoy what you do and have lots of fun at it.”
Either way, this seems to be a great hire for Cornell.