VMI announces Danny Rocco as head football coach

Rocco previously held positions as head coach for Richmond, Liberty

LEXINGTON, Va. – VMI Athletics announced Danny Rocco as its new head football coach on Saturday.

The 33rd head coach for the Keydets has past experience on both FBS and FCS levels, as well as the NFL. He has won seven conference championships in 16 years.

Rocco also made five FCS playoff appearances, four Big South Conference Championships, and three Colonial Association Championships.

Rocco comes to VMI after helping to lead Penn State to a 10-2 record as a Defensive Senior Analyst. He previously held positions as head coach for Delaware, Richmond, and Liberty, with each team making top-25 finishes.

“Coach Rocco has had a great deal of success at every level leading his teams both on and off the field,” stated Major General Cedric T. Wins. “He is clearly someone who believes in developing his players into leaders of character in perfect alignment with VMI’s mission. I look forward to the future success that our cadet-athletes will enjoy from his leadership.”

Rocco has been an assistant for the New York Jets, the University of Virginia, the University of Maryland, and the University of Texas, but got his coaching start from Wake Forest — where he finished his playing career. He played his first two years at Penn State, then transferred to Wake Forest, graduating in 1984.

“It is a privilege to welcome Danny to Lexington,” Director of Intercollegiate Athletics Jim Miller said. “I have seen his success firsthand, and believe he will bring that winning tradition with him here to VMI.”

Rocco wants to continue the emphasis on bringing local athletes to VMI, a staple for the team’s roster.

“I feel like this area has been a little bit under recruited and because of that and the geography, there are a lot of hidden gems here in this area and we’re going to continue to work really hard to try and be able to find those guys,” he said. “There should be a natural attraction geographically, and again, people in this part of the state have great respect, the entire state does, for VMI and what it stands for and what it produces, so those are real things.”

About the Author:

Lauren Helkowski joined WSLS 10’s digital team in August 2022, but has held a passion for storytelling long before.