Kavanagh has been a coach with the Holy Cross track and field and cross country programs for over four decades, and has coached over 2,000 Holy Cross student-athletes during his tenure. He joined the Crusader staff in 1970 as an assistant track and field coach and was appointed head coach in 1978. Kavanagh was then promoted to the position of director of men’s and women’s track and cross country in the summer of 1999. Under his tutelage, five members of the cross country and track and field teams have been named Crusader of the Year, while four have received the Honorable John P. Cooney Memorial Award. Kavanagh has coached 14 New England champions, over 25 Patriot League champions, four Patriot League Scholar-Athletes of the Year, four CoSIDA Academic All-Americans and hundreds of Patriot League Academic Honor Roll selections. A 1968 graduate of Boston College, Kavanagh was a four-time All-American in the hammer and weight throws. He was also drafted by the Kansas City Chiefs of the National Football League.