Recruiting Areas: Michigan, New Jersey (Northern), Ohio (Northern), Wisconsin
Brian Vaganek is in his third season on the Crusader coaching staff in 2019, serving as the linebackers coach. He helped Nick McBeath earn All-America honors during the 2017 season, while McBeath (2017) and Ryan Brady (2018) were both selected first team All-Patriot League.
Vaganek has an extensive coaching background with over 20 years of collegiate experience. He came to Holy Cross from the University of New Haven, where he served as the defensive coordinator and linebackers coach from 2014-2016. He helped lead the Chargers to a 19-8 record in Northeast-10 Conference play during that time, with the team finishing either second or third in the league standings every season. New Haven led the conference and ranked 10th in the nation in scoring defense in 2015 (17.6 points per game), while finishing in the top two in the league in rushing defense during each of his three seasons. The Chargers totaled 10 all-conference selections on the defensive side of the ball during Vaganek’s tenure, including linebacker Tyler Condit, who set all-time school records for tackles in a single season and a career, and set the Northeast-10 record for career tackles.
Vaganek previously spent three seasons at the University of Rhode Island from 2011-2013, including two years as the defensive coordinator. During his tenure with the Rams, he coached five all-conference selections and two players who earned All-New England honors.
Prior to arriving in Kingston, Vaganek spent four years at Christopher Newport University as the associate head coach. During his four-year tenure, the Captains posted a 26-15 mark, including trips to the NCAA playoffs in 2008 and 2010. His defense limited opponents to just 20.1 points per game and forced 24 fumbles in 2008, while leading the USA South Conference in scoring defense in 2009 (20.5 points per game).
Vaganek began his coaching career at Highland (Kan.) Community College as the defensive line coach in 1993. He later served six years on the staff at William & Mary (1995-2000), including one year as defensive coordinator after previously coaching the defensive line and linebackers. Vaganek then moved to Hofstra University from 2001-2003, where he coached the defensive line. He also spent one year as the linebackers coach at Fort Scott (Kan.) Community College in 1994 and eventually returned for a two-year stint as head coach from 2004-2005.
Vaganek is a 1993 graduate of Temple University, where he played four years as an offensive lineman. He and his wife, Jeanette, have a son (Brian Jr.) and a daughter (Julia).