Former FAU DC Roc Bellantoni is joining the coaching staff at Buffalo.
Former Florida Atlantic defensive coordinator Roc Bellantoni will see the Owls again this year — on the opposing sideline.
Bellantoni will join Buffalo’s coaching staff this season in an off-field role, a source confirmed, meaning he’ll match up with FAU during the season’s fourth week. The Owls play at Buffalo on Sept. 23.
Bellantoni was the defensive coordinator for former coach Charlie Partridge at FAU, guiding the unit for each of Partridge’s three seasons. Partridge was fired last November after the Owls went 3-9 for the third straight season.
Last season, the Owls’ defense ranked 123rd in scoring defense (39.8 points per game) and 124th in total defense (513.8 yards per game). In the season’s final game, Middle Tennessee scored 77 points and rolled up 757 total yards against FAU.
Previously, Bellantoni coached at Villanova (special teams and defensive line) and Eastern Illinois (10 years as a defensive coordinator).
Bellantoni is the latest former Owls coach to find a new job in football. Travis Trickett (offensive coordinator) joined Georgia State in the same role. Chris Hurd (tight ends and special teams) is at Chattanooga coaching running backs.
Terrance Jamison (defensive line) and Corey Bell (cornerbacks) each moved on to Power 5 jobs at Texas Tech and Florida, respectively. Partridge returned to coaching the defensive line at Pittsburgh.
Garin Justice (offensive line) was the only assistant coach retained as part of first-year coach Lane Kiffin’s staff.
No preseason honors
FAU was one of three Conference USA schools (Charlotte and UAB) that did not place a player on the preseason Conference USA team.
The Owls’ most likely candidate appeared to be running back Devin “Motor” Singletary, who rushed for 1,021 and 12 touchdowns last year as a freshman. He was beaten out by Old Dominion’s Ray Lawry and Southern Miss’ Ito Smith.
Western Kentucky quarterback and University School graduate Mike White was named the Preseason Offensive Player of the Year.