BUFFALO, NY – Lance Leipold was introduced as the 25th head coach in the history of the Buffalo Bulls football program by Director of Athletics Danny White on Monday.
Leipold comes to UB from Wisconsin-Whitewater, where he has compiled an astounding 106-6 record and won five Division III National Championships over his eight seasons. He has the Warhawks positioned for their sixth national crown this year as they are 12-0 and the top-ranked team in the nation. A six-time National Coach of the Year, Leipold reached 100 career victories faster than any other coach in NCAA history – at any level.
Leipold has gathered multiple honors from as many as five football-related organizations. He earned his fifth American Football Coaches Association Division III Coach of the Year award in 2013, joining Penn State's Joe Paterno as the only coaches at any level of college football to earn five AFCA Coach of the Year honors.
In his first season as head coach at Whitewater, The Warhawks went 14-1 and won the national title. He led the Warhawks back to the national championship game in 2008, but they lost to Mount Union, 31-26. Wisconsin-Whitewater went 15-0, winning the national championship in 2009, 2010 and 2011 and won 46 straight games over that span.
Following a 7-3 season in 2012, UWW went a perfect 15-0 and won the national championship in 2013 and is currently 12-0 and the top-ranked team in the nation this season. The Warhawks defeated Wabash College, 38-14, in the second round of the Division III playoffs on Saturday. They will face Wartburg in the quarterfinals on Saturday. Leipold will coach the Warhawks for the remainder of their season.
"I'd like to thank Dr. Tripathi and Danny White for this outstanding opportunity to be the 25th head football coach at New York's university," said Leipold. "This is an unbelievable opportunity. It's ready to take off. It's going to take work, it's going to take commitment, and that's what makes athletics, especially football, so competing. It's the ultimate team game and I'm glad to be a part of this team."
In Division III, where athletic scholarships aren't a part of the game, Leipold was able to recruit top-notch talent to the campus in southeastern Wisconsin. During his tenure, running back Justin Beaver earned the Gagliardi Trophy as the top player in Division III. Brent Allen earned the Division III Rimington Award as the top center. Jeff Schebler was the first recipient of the Fred Mitchell Award, given to the top placekicker in Division II or III. Tailback Levell Coppage earned D3football.com Offensive Player of the Year accolades, and Cole Klotz was selected D3football.com Defensive Player of the Year. Defensive back Jared Kiesow was named an NCAA Elite 88 Award winner. The Warhawks have piled up 56 All-America honors under Leipold's tutelage.
A native of Jefferson, WI, Leipold began his coaching career at Wisconsin-Whitewater in 1987 as a quarterbacks coach and then wide receivers coach. He moved to the University of Wisconsin from 1991-93 as a graduate assistant and helped the Badgers to a Big Ten title and a Rose Bowl appearance in 1993.
As an assistant coach at Division II Nebraska-Omaha from 1994-2000, Leipold helped turn the Mavericks from a 1-10 team in 1994 into three-time North Central Conference champions during his tenure. After being promoted to offensive coordinator in 2000, he moved on to the University of Nebraska, where he served for three seasons under current Ohio head coach Frank Solich. He was on the same staff as former UB head coach Turner Gill. The Cornhuskers competed in the national championship game in 2001 and earned bowl bids in 2002 and 2003.
He returned to Nebraska-Omaha to serve as associate head coach and offensive coordinator from 2004-06. The Mavericks finished 8-3 and won the conference championship each of his three seasons.
Leipold is a 1987 graduate of Wisconsin-Whitewater, where he was a standout quarterback for the Warhawks. He ranks second in school history in career pass attempts (647), fourth in yards (4,277), sixth in completions (303) and tied for 10th with 27 touchdowns. He was inducted into the Whitewater Hall of Fame in 2003.
"This morning I had the chance to meet with the team. What an impressive group of young men," said Leipold. "To see the looks on their faces, I know they're hungry and ready to get to work, and I'm equally as excited."
Leipold and his wife, Kelly, have a daughter, Lindsey, and a son, Landon.
The Lance Leipold File
Born: May 6, 1964
Children: Lindsey (14) and Landon (8)
Education: Wisconsin-Whitewater (1987), B.A. in Sociology
Wisconsin-Whitewater (1991), M.Ed. in Guidance and Counseling
1987 Wisconsin-Whitewater (Quarterbacks)
1988 Wisconsin-Whitewater (Wide Receivers)
1989 Doane (Assistant)
1990 Wisconsin-Whitewater (Assistant)
1991-93 Wisconsin (GA)
1994-00 Nebraska-Omaha (Assistant)
2001-03 Nebraska (Assistant)
2004-06 Nebraska-Omaha (Assistant Head Coach/Offensive Coordinator)
2007-14 Wisconsin-Whitewater (Head Coach)
2015- State University of New York, Buffalo (Head Coach)