Keith Goganious recruited the Washington area for the past few years as a Hampton University assistant football coach. Now he will recruit the area as the head coach at Bishop McNamara.
The Forestville school Friday afternoon announced Goganious, a former Penn State linebacker and five-year player in the NFL, as its new coach.
Goganious, 44, had been an assistant at Hampton for the past four years, three as defensive coordinator, but was not retained for next season. He also will serve as McNamara’s assistant athletic director.
A former North Point assistant for two years, Goganious has a background in sales and marketing, which could come in handy in trying to attract players to a program that has won one Washington Catholic Athletic Conference game in each of the past three seasons.
“The theme will be ‘Resurrection to Glory,’ ” Goganious said late Friday afternoon from California, where he is coaching this weekend in the NFL Players Association Collegiate Bowl. “We want to get back to the way Bishop McNamara was when it was winning and competing against those other teams and bring pride and respect back to our program.
“I recruited that area. I know the talent that is there. We’re going to be out there looking for the best of the best. That’s the type of kids we want. Strong academics and good athletes who can come in and be a positive piece of the puzzle.”
Goganious said his assistants likely will include holdovers from the previous staff and others with deep ties to the community and youth league programs. He plans to meet with the McNamara players Tuesday.
Goganious spent five years in the NFL with Buffalo, Jacksonville and Baltimore. The Bills chose the Virginia Beach native in the third round of the 1992 draft. He played in two Super Bowls for Buffalo, both losses to Dallas.
Goganious replaces Bryce Bevill, a former DeMatha assistant whose teams went 38-55 in nine seasons and 22-39 in the WCAC, including 0-22 against top teams Good Counsel and DeMatha. In those 22 losses to the perennial front-runners, McNamara was shut out eight times and scored a touchdown or less in 18 games. McNamara has not scored against four-time league champion Good Counsel since 2009.
The Mustangs reached the WCAC playoffs each year from 2006 to 2009 but had three-win seasons the past three years. They return two first-team all conference players — junior offensive lineman Damian Prince and junior wide receiver Jordan Crockett — and one second-team choice Adam Gillis, a junior running back.
“[Goganious] just had an exuberant personality and an infectious type of enthusiasm we think in the end is going to serve us well,” said McNamara Athletic Director Tony Johnson, who sifted through almost 50 applicants and interviewed eight. “We think the Keith Goganious hire is the proper formula to attract kids to be successful here.
“One of the jobs of any coach, especially in private school, is to be able to sell your program, to sell your school. We certainly understand his background in marketing and fundraising and those were pluses in terms of his skill set.”
Related: McNamara football schedule, scores