|Title:||Joel E. Smilow ’54 Defensive Coordinator (LB)|
Rick Flanders, who coached his 16th season at Yale in 2012, returned last fall to the job of defensive coordinator, a position he held under former Yale mentor Jack Siedlecki for 12 seasons. He was promoted to associate head coach in 2007, has been on the staffs of the last three Yale head coaches and has 22 years of experience coaching in the Ancient Eight.
Flanders has handled defensive backs and linebackers during his Yale tenure. Under his watch, Yale was ranked No. 1 in the FCS in scoring defense in 2007 and 2008.
He came to Yale from the University of Pennsylvania, where he was secondary coach for five seasons (1992 to 1996), including Ivy titles in 1993 and 1994. Flanders' defensive backs helped the Penn defense rank nationally in both seasons, including No. 1 in pass efficiency defense for 1994.
Before heading to Philadelphia, Flanders was head coach of the undefeated 1991 Dean (Mass.) Junior College team and was the linebacker and special teams coach at Lafayette from 1987 to 1990.
In 1986 he was the defensive coordinator at American International College, after three seasons as linebacker and defensive back coach at SUNY-Albany, where he also served as head lacrosse coach for one year.
Flanders graduated from the University of Maine in 1979 and earned a master’s degree in education from the University at Albany.
A Concord, N.H., native, he and his wife, Wendy, live in Madison and have three children: Ashley, Lindsey and Alexander '14.