KINGSTON, R.I. – Rhode Island football head coach Joe Trainer announced the promotion of coaches Brian Vaganek, Liam Coen and Doug Borsari, as well as the hiring of new coaches Ryan Mattison, Matt Sutjak and Matt Urban.
"I couldn't be happier with the makeup of our staff. We not only have great teachers here but more importantly, great men," Trainer said. "Brian has coordinated at this level and has enjoyed great success at William & Mary and Hofstra.
"Liam is an incredibly smart coach and has a great feel for the student-athletes with whom he works. Ryan Mattison is an outstanding football coach who has roots in the New England Area, as he grew up in Worcester, Mass. He is coming to URI highly recommended from people I know and trust."
Vaganek has been named the Rams' defensive coordinator, and will continue working with the defensive lineman. He joined the staff last March and helped senior defensive tackle Willie McGinnis earn second-team All-CAA honors last fall. McGinnis ranked third among defensive tackles in the conference with 66 tackles, including 10 for a loss. As a unit, the Rams ranked fifth in the CAA in rushing defense at 147.3 yards per game.
Coen has been named the passing game coordinator and will continue working as the team's quarterbacks coach. With two quarterbacks – Steve Probst and Bob Bentsen – receiving significant playing time, the Rams averaged 188.6 passing yards per game. Bentsen ranked sixth in the conference in total offense (144.4 yards per game), while Probst was right behind him in eighth (128.6 yards per game). Probst also led the team with five rushing touchdowns.
Mattison joins the Rams as the defensive backs coach. Most recently, Mattison was the secondary coach, video coordinator and recruiting coordinator at Bowdoin College. His unit helped the Polar Bear defense rank second in total pass defense and third in pass defense efficiency in the New England Small College Athletic Conference.
Mattison has coaching ties throughout New England. In addition to Bowdoin, he has coached at Boston College (graduate assistant, 2007-10), Holy Cross (assistant secondary coach (2005-07) and Assumption (secondary, 2004-05). During his playing career, Mattison was a walk-on at Boston College who eventually earned a full scholarship and two varsity letters with the Eagles.
Urban, a former URI safety, will work closely with Mattison as the assistant defensive backs and cornerbacks coach. Urban spent five years in the program as a player, appearing in 31 games and recording 76 tackles, five interceptions and two sacks from 2006-10.
Sutjak will be the assistant offensive line coach with the Rams. He spent 2011 coaching the secondary at Lycoming College, where he coached D3football.com All-American safety Ray Bierbach, and had three players from his unit earn All-Middle Atlantic Conference honors. Sutjak is a 2010 graduate of Millersville University in Pennsylvania, where he played defensive back.
After working as the assistant offensive line coach in 2011, Borsari is now the director of football operations for Rhode Island. He replaces Dan Silva, who departed for a job in the scouting department with the NFL's Indianapolis Colts in January.