Rossomando Resigns, McCarthy Named Interim Coach

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Rossomando Resigns, McCarthy Named Interim Coach

McCarthy takes over the Blue Devils after five seasons as offensive coordinator.

McCarthy takes over the Blue Devils after five seasons as offensive coordinator.

Julia Jade Moran

McCarthy takes over the Blue Devils after five seasons as offensive coordinator.

Julia Jade Moran

Julia Jade Moran

McCarthy takes over the Blue Devils after five seasons as offensive coordinator.

Patrick Gustavson, Sports Editor

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A familiar face will be taking over the Central Connecticut football program, as the school has promoted offensive coordinator Ryan McCarthy to interim head coach following the departure of Pete Rossomando, who took the role of offensive line coach at Rutgers.

Despite the interim tag, McCarthy will be leading the Blue Devils for the 2019 season. Athletics Director Brian Barrio said that designation was due to the state hiring process.

“This is how we have to do it to have a coach in place right away,” Barrio said. “Otherwise, the search process takes two months, even if I know I want Ryan.”

The announcement of McCarthy’s promotion came at the same time of Rossomando’s departure. It was a decision that Barrio said had been in the works, as the department was bracing for Rossomando’s potential departure.

“This is something we’ve been thinking about for a couple months,” Barrio said. “We knew Pete would be in demand. This wasn’t unforeseeable. We knew that the economics were that this could happen and we had conversations about a succession plan.”

Barrio stressed the importance of continuity and keeping the staff together.

“We’ve got a staff in place that everyone here believes in, that conducts themselves in a tremendous way on and off the field. Do we need change for the sake of change? I don’t think so. I think what we need is stability and continuity to build what we’ve put in place.”

Barrio applauded McCarthy for his character and leadership skills and cited endorsements of many throughout the CCSU community.

“Every person I’ve talked to from our football student-athletes, to our staff here, to other people on the staff, to the donors, to Pete, all unanimously felt like Ryan is the guy,” Barrio said.

In five seasons at the helm, Rossomando led the Blue Devils to a 22-34 record. In 2017, the team won the NEC behind a perfect conference record, appearing in the Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) playoffs for the first time in school history. His departure was first reported by Football Scoop late last Monday night, after he had told the team, in person, per Barrio.

Barrio went on to applaud Rossomando’s handling of the situation, saying he “couldn’t have handled it more professionally.”

Barrio cited the economics of college football, calling the salary difference of being on a Big 10 staff and a Northeast Conference head coach “massive” and “unmatchable.”

“It’s a difference to the point where it’s such a good move for his family and his security that I can’t do anything but congratulate him,” Barrio said. “But I want it to be clear to everyone on campus that this is entirely amicable, he handled it all professionally and everybody here wishes him the absolute best.”

Since Barrio was not at CCSU for the NEC championship, he had a different takeaway of Rossomando’s legacy.

“The biggest thing that will stick with me is that he took a program that probably didn’t have the best reputation on campus and he built it into a team full of young men that people respect, that represent us well, that are great student-athletes,” Barrio said.

Moving forward, Barrio feels the program is on the rise and the success will continue to make strides under McCarthy.

“I think that’s a room full of guys that want to run through a brick wall for Ryan McCarthy and I think you’ll see it on the field next year,” Barrio said.