Manny Matsakis

Manny's Story

I’m Manny Matsakis, the Head Football Coach of The Defiance College Yellow Jackets (OH). My primary objective at Defiance College is to mentor our coaching staff and players to create a championship football program that contributes to our campus and the “Black Swamp” region of northwest Ohio in remarkable ways.

Historically, the success of each football program that I have had the privilege to run has been tied to running a system I have created called the Triple Shoot Offense. I created the Triple Shoot Offense in 1996, after being a pure Run & Shoot proponent during my years coaching at Hofstra University (1991-1993).

I saw a problem that limited our ability to win football games at Emporia State and I solved it with my offense. This offensive system has most successfully been matched up with an aggressive defensive scheme and the combination of these has been labeled the “Sting and Shoot” at Emporia State and now it’s called the “Swarm and Shoot” at Defiance College.

I am the founder of American Football Monthly, the trade journal I created to help coaches improve in our profession. I have been fortunate to put myself in a position to succeed both on and off the gridiron and would like to help you do the same.

This website is the result of my passion to learn from others and share that information with members of our coaching fraternity. (Female coaches are welcome as well.)

Quick Look

My Content

My mission is to help football coaches that are high achievers, win on the field and in life by implementing the essentials of my philosophy & methodology.

I have been able to learn from some hall of fame coaches as well as bonafide masters inside and outside of our industry.

To that end, I write about X’s & O’s, coaching football, leadership, productivity, and personal development. Ultimately, I give you an “insider’s perspective” of my life as a career football coach. 

My goal is to create insightful, useful content that you can put to work in your personal and professional life.

“If you consider yourself a high achiever – someone who wants to optimize their life as a football coach – then this website is for you.”

I typically post on a regular basis

These posts range from articles, podcast episodes, videos (Inside Access and Coaching Conversations), and some experimental content (maybe a Greek recipe or some other delectable items I enjoy making in my kitchen.)

Coaching Background

Head Football Coach: Emporia State University (KS), Texas State University, Bethany College (KS), Enka High School (NC) and Defiance College (OH)

Assistant Head Coach: Texas Tech University

Offensive Coordinator: Hofstra University (NY), University of Wyoming, Capital University (OH), Winnipeg Blue Bombers (CFL) and Widener University (PA)

Special Teams Coordinator: Kansas State University and Texas Tech University

Tight Ends Coach: Kansas State University

Receiver Coach: Barberton High School (OH)

Associates and Influences

I have been very fortunate to have worked with and be mentored by some of the finest coaches in the business. It’s not every day that a young football coach gets to become part of the greatest turnaround in college football history. Having the opportunity to work with Bill Snyder at Kansas State has been very instrumental in my organizational processes.

Kansas State

Back Row (L-R): Mark Mangino (Former Kansas HC), Mo Lattimore (Longtime D-Line Coach at KSU), Dana Dimel (UTEP HC), Bill Snyder, Rod Humenuik (Longtime NFL & CFL O-Line Coach), Myself, Greg Porter (Kickers Coach)

Front Row (L-R): Rod Cole (Strength Coach), Mike Stoops (Former Arizona HC), Del Miller (Longtime OC at KSU), Bob Stoops (Former Oklahoma HC), Bruce Van de Velde (FBO & Former AD at Iowa State), Jim Leavitt (Former South Florida HC)


If that experience wasn’t enough … 

I enjoyed working with Mike Leach as his Assistant Head Coach in Lubbock, Texas. Our staff at Texas Tech was a virtual think-tank as we embarked upon taking the Red Raiders to the upper echelon of the Big XII conference.

Texas Tech

Back Row (L-R): Dennis Simmons (Oklahoma WR Coach), Sonny Dykes (SMU HC), Ron Harris (D-Line Coach), Ruffin McNeill (Oklahoma Assistant Head Coach) Dave Aranda (Baylor HC), Dave Brown (DB Coach), Art Briles (Former Baylor HC)

Front Row (L-R): Robert Anae (Virginia OC), Dave Nichol (Mississippi State WR Coach), Tommy McVay (Longtime FBO), Myself, Mike Leach (Mississippi State HC), Greg McMackin (Former Hawaii HC), Dana Holgorsen (University of Houston HC), Bill Bedenbaugh (O-Line Coach at Oklahoma) Brian Walsh (Defensive Personal Assistant)

Personal Life

My Family

I am married to my wife Elizabeth and we are parents to three children, Meredith, Michael, and Eli.

My daughter Meredith graduated from High Point University (NC) majoring in Visual Merchandising Design and currently works at Diane von Furstenberg in New York City.

Michael graduated from Duquesne University (PA) majoring in Music Composition and Technology and he is currently working on his Master’s Degree at NYU.

Our 7-year-old, Eli goes to elementary school here in Defiance, Ohio and he hangs out with his dog, Georgie! He is still getting over the loss of his best friend Spartacus – a 170 pound Great Dane! (Pictured to the right.)

I am the oldest of 4 boys and each of my younger brothers has taken their own path in athletics. Jimmy is the Offensive Coordinator at Pope John High School (NJ). George has been involved with football (Video, Football Operations) as well as in athletic administration at the Division 1 level and is currently the Director of Football Operations at the University of North Texas. My youngest brother Louie coaches special teams at the University of Kentucky.

In my free time, I enjoy reading, working out, cooking, listening to podcasts and staying in touch with people that are important to me.

I'm not your typical career football coach...

See, years ago, I started on this journey of entrepreneurship and created five different companies while coaching the game. (I guess I wasn’t busy enough…)

I set out to be this football coach that juggled his career along with numerous other ventures on the side. I worked 18-hour days for two decades and rarely took vacations…

In 1997, I completed my first fire-walk in Denver with Tony Robbins and I thought I could do it all!

However, I discovered this lifestyle was a recipe for disaster. No matter how driven I was, I just couldn’t do everything and enjoy my life. I realize now that if I just focus on what is essential in my life I can make the greatest contribution.

This website is my latest contribution to the greatest profession in the world, I hope you enjoy it.

Why Should You Listen to Me?

And, this last point is significant...

Freddie Mercury once sang,

“And bad mistakes, I’ve made a few, I’ve had my share of sand kicked in my face, but I’ve come through.”

Sometimes it has been downright embarrassing and I’ve just wanted to hide.

I will share the good, the bad and the ugly in an effort to give you that profound knowledge - which is so critical to becoming a 'Pro' in today’s football coaching environment.

I’ve learned so many lessons. Reach out to me and let’s take the next step together…

Here's My Contact Information

You can reach me via e-mail or follow me on Instagram and Twitter.

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