By Tim Healey, Globe Correspondent
Bill Kavanaugh is a Falcon — again.
The former Bentley football captain and Dartmouth native is headed back to the Waltham campus as his alma mater’s head coach, the university announced Friday. Kavanaugh’s new gig comes nearly a decade after his graduation from the school.
The 31-year-old Kavanaugh has spent the last six seasons at Penn State in various roles under both Joe Paterno and Bill O’Brien. He was most recently the program’s director of player personnel, overseeing recruiting while managing the entire coaching staff and roster.
“The opportunity to return home to Boston and lead a program with such a great tradition is a dream come true," said Kavanaugh, Class of 2004 who was a four-year starter on the defensive line for Peter Yetten. He replaces Thom Boerman, who retired Nov. 30 after five seasons as head coach, wrapping a 28-year tenure with the program.
Bentley will be Kavanaugh’s third local stop as a college coach. He got his start at UMass-Dartmouth under his father, Bill Kavanaugh, Sr., in 2004 before moving on to Stonehill in 2007. He also served a four-month stint as an assistant coach at Bentley in 2008 before moving to Penn State to work under Paterno while pursuing his Master’s degree.
“Bill Kavanaugh was a tremendous asset to us here at Penn State University,” said Penn State second-year coach Bill O'Brien, an Andover native who worked on the Patriots' staff for five seasons.
“He was involved in all facets of our program and I credit him with much of our success in recruiting and all of the things that went on behind the scenes here at Penn State. Bill will be a fantastic head coach at Bentley University."
As a senior in 2003, Kavanaugh was the Falcons’ captain and garnered All-Northeast-10 and Division II All-American honors as Bentley earned its first NCAA Division 2 tournament berth.
Bentley finished 6-5 this past season.
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