Phil Elmassian
Phil Elmassian

Defensive Coordinator / Outside Linebackers

2nd Season at UMass

Alma Mater:
William & Mary '74


Football Set For Season-Opener At No. 23 Wisconsin

Watch the Minutemen take on the Badgers live on the Big Ten Network.


Football To Host Coaches Clinic On April 4-6

Football coaches are invited to join the UMass coaching staff for this great weekend.


Football To Host Inaugural Coaches Clinic April 12-14

Head coach Charley Molnar invites coaching staffs to attend this three day event



FB SPRING GAME Photos by Thom Kendall '93



FB vs. OHIO Photos by Thom Kendall '93



FB vs. MICHIGAN Photos by Thom Kendall '93

A veteran collegiate coach, Phil Elmassian joined UMass as the defensive coordinator and linebackers coach before the 2012 campaign. Since 1974 Elmassian has coached collegiate football at the highest levels covering nearly four decades, including 12 years as a defensive coordinator and tenures with programs from the ACC, Big East, Big Ten and Pac-12.

In 2012, Elmassian's UMass defense earned All-MAC and Phil Steele Magazine All-Conference honorees in free safety Darren Thellen and linebacker Perry McIntyre. The duo combined for 211 tackles, 10 passes defended and a trio of interceptions as a pair of senior leaders among a young defensive group. As the defensive coordinator, Elmassian guided a unit that earned the fourth-most interceptions, tied for the fifth-best fourth down stoppage rate, earned the sixth-most turnovers in the Mid-American Conference and finished seventh in the league for pass defense all with seven true-freshmen starting during the campaign.

Elmassian (pronounced el-MAY-shun) spent the 2011 season with Purdue marking his second coaching stint with the Boilermakers. Prior to that, he spent the two seasons as the defensive coordinator at Illinois State, and has served in the same capacity at West Virginia, LSU, Boston College and Virginia Tech, as well as the linebackers coach at Marshall and defensive backs coach at Nebraska, Wisconsin, Syracuse, Minnesota and East Carolina. He has mentored 26 all-conference players, including two All-Americans, and has coached in 18 bowls in his career.

The veteran coach has been a part of championships in four conferences and has served as the defensive coordinator at five NCAA Division I FBS schools: Louisiana-Monroe, LSU, Virginia Tech, Boston College and West Virginia.

His five league titles include Marshall's Mid-American Conference Championship in 2002; Washington's Pac-10 Championship in 1995; and Virginia's Atlantic Coast Conference Championship in 1989. He also helped lead Wisconsin to the Rose Bowl and Big Ten Championships in 1998 and 1999, as the Badger defense led the nation in scoring defense in 1998 and ranked fifth in 1999.

With Elmassian on staff, the 2003 Boilermakers finished third in the Big Ten in scoring, rushing and total defense and fourth in the league in pass defense. Purdue ranked second in the Big Ten, and 19th in the nation, in pass efficiency defense in 2003, and also ranked 13th nationally in total defense.

During Elmassian's stint at Wisconsin, the Badgers led the nation in scoring defense in 1998 (11.9 points per game) and ranked fifth in 1999 (12.8). They were No. 1 in the Big Ten in scoring defense, total defense (298.1 - 15th nationally) and passing defense (97.9 - fifth nationally) in 1999. Wisconsin became the first Big Ten school to win back-to-back Rose Bowls in 1998 and 1999, defeating the high-powered offenses of UCLA and Stanford. All four of the Badgers' defensive backs earned first team, second team or honorable mention all-conference honors in 1999. Cornerback Jamar Fletcher led the nation in interceptions in 1998 with seven and went on to be named the Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year, earn consensus All-America honors and win the Jim Thorpe Award as the nation's outstanding defensive back in 2000.

Elmassian (born April 28, 1951) is a 1974 graduate of William and Mary, where he played defensive back under Lou Holtz. He and his wife, Mary, have three children, Claire, Dylan and Olivia.


Year Team Position W-L Postseason Note
1974 William & Mary Quarterbacks Coach/Running Backs Coach 4-7 -
1975 William & Mary Quarterbacks Coach/Running Backs Coach 2-9 -
1976 William & Mary Quarterbacks Coach/Running Backs Coach 5-6 -
1977 William & Mary Quarterbacks Coach/Running Backs Coach 3-8 -
1978 William & Mary Quarterbacks Coach/Running Backs Coach 3-8 -
1979 Ferrum Junior College Defensive Coordinator 10-1 -
1980 Ferrum Junior College Defensive Coordinator 9-1-1 -
1981 Ferrum Junior College Defensive Coordinator 8-2 -
1982 Ferrum Junior College Defensive Coordinator 9-1 -
1983 East Carolina Defensive Backs Coach 8-3 -
1984 Minnesota Defensive Backs Coach 6-5 -
1985 Virginia Tech Defensive Backs Coach 6-5 -
1986 Virginia Tech Defensive Backs Coach 10-1-1 Peach Bowl
1987 Virginia Defensive Backs Coach 8-4 All-American Bowl
1988 Virginia Defensive Backs Coach 7-5 -
1989 Virginia Defensive Backs Coach 10-3 Citrus Bowl
1990 Virginia Defensive Backs Coach 8-4 Sugar Bowl
1991 Syracuse Defensive Backs Coach 10-2 Hall of Fame Bowl
1992 Syracuse Defensive Backs Coach 10-2 Fiesta Bowl
1993 Virginia Tech Defensive Coordinator 9-3 Gator Bowl
1994 Virginia Tech Defensive Coordinator 8-4 Sun Bowl
1995 Washington Defensive Backs Coach 7-4-1 Sun Bowl
1996 Boston College Defensive Backs Coach 5-7 -
1997 Wisconsin Defensive Backs Coach 8-5 Outback Bowl
1998 Wisconsin Defensive Backs Coach 11-1 Rose Bowl
1999 Wisconsin Defensive Backs Coach 10-2 Rose Bowl
2000 LSU Defensive Coordinator 8-4 Peach Bowl
2001 West Virginia Defensive Coordinator 3-8 -
2002 Marshall Linebackers Coach 11-2 GMAC Bowl
2003 Purdue Defensive Backs Coach 9-4 Citrus Bowl
2004 Nebraska Defensive Backs Coach 5-6 -
2005 Nebraska Defensive Backs Coach 8-4 Alamo Bowl
2006 Nebraska Defensive Backs Coach 9-5 Cotton Bowl
2007 Nebraska Defensive Backs Coach 5-6 -
2008 Louisiana-Monroe Defensive Coordinator 4-8 -
2009 Illinois State Defensive Coordinator 6-5 -
2010 Illinois State Defensive Coordinator 6-5 -
2011 Purdue Linebackers Coach 7-6 Little Caesars Pizza Bowl
2012 Massachusetts Defensive Coordinator/Outside Linebackers Coach 1-11 -


    Event Calendar

    July 25
    vs Gridiron Club Golf Event, Pine Hills G.C. TBA
    September 3
    at Florida TBA
    September 10
    vs Boston College 12:00 PM
    September 17
    vs Florida International TBA
    September 24
    vs Mississippi State TBA
    October 1
    vs Tulane TBA
    October 8
    at Old Dominion TBA
    October 15
    vs Louisiana Tech TBA
    October 22
    at South Carolina TBA
    October 29
    vs Wagner TBA
    November 5
    at Troy TBA
    November 19
    at BYU TBA
    November 26
    at Hawai'i TBA
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