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Gary Darnell    

Former Western Michigan University Football Coach; Associate Executive Director, American Football Coaches Association

With more than 35 years of coaching experience at football programs including the University of Texas, Notre Dame, Florida, and Texas A&M, Gary Darnell has developed of hundreds of successful and even legendary NFL players and coaches. A former All-Big Eight Conference linebacker at Oklahoma State University, Gary went on to become one of the youngest coaches in Division One college football as he was named linebackers coach at his alma mater just two years after graduation. A few short years later Gary became the assistant head coach and defensive coordinator at Kansas State University, leading the Wildcats to the Independence Bowl, their first bowl appearance in school history.

Gary became a rising star in the coaching community and was soon the defensive coordinator at the University of Florida. In each of his two seasons at Florida, his defenses ranked third nationally and first in the Southeastern Conference.

In 1990 legendary Notre Dame head coach Lou Holtz asked Gary to be his assistant head coach and defensive coordinator replacing Barry Alvarez. Coach Darnell's career also included successful stops at top programs such as The University of Texas and Texas A&M University. Gary was the head coach at Western Michigan University where he accomplished a remarkable turnaround of the struggling program leading them to multiple Division Championships and earning the honor of 2000 Mid-American Conference Coach of the Year.

With a wealth of wisdom and a rich understanding of leadership, teamwork, and success forged during his coaching days, Gary brings a contagious energy to any speaking engagement. Whether empowering a small group of upper management executives or speaking to entire corporations, Coach Darnell communicates what it takes to be a champion in business and in life.


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Speech Topics

Leading the Leaders

Creating a Culture that Builds Legends

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