DALLAS — Frank Cignetti, who spent 10 seasons at West Virginia as offensive coordinator and head coach before enjoying prolonged success in Division II, was announced as a member of the Divisional College Football Hall of Fame’s 2013 class.

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Frank Cignetti

Cignetti became the winningest coach in Indiana University of Pennsylvania history, leading the Hawks to a 182-50-1 mark  from 1986 to 2005, highlighted by D-II national title game appearances in 1990 and 1993.

A former NAIA All-American who played end at IUP from 1956-59, Cignetti was an inaugural member of his alma mater’s athletics hall of fame in 1996, and served as the school’s athletics director from 1982-98.

He took IUP to 13 Division II playoffs appearances, including six trips to the national semifinals, and he led the Hawks to at least a co-share of the PSAC Western Division title 14 times. IUP ranked in the Top 20 each season from 1986-2004. He retired after the 2005 season as the third-winningest active coach in Division II.

Cignetti served as the offensive coordinator at WVU under head coach Bobby Bowden from 1970-75 before taking over as the Mountaineers’ head coach for four seasons (1976-79), a stint during which WVU was 17-27.

The Divisional College Football Hall of Fame considers players and coaches from the NCAA Football Championship Subdivision, Divisions II, III and the NAIA for induction. The class includes:

PLAYERS:
· Shelby Jordan – Washington University in St. Louis [Mo.], linebacker (1969-72)
· Joe Micchia – Westminster College [Pa.], quarterback (1987-89)
· Art Shell – University of Maryland Eastern Shore, offensive tackle (1964-67)
· Jeff Wittman – Ithaca College [N.Y.], fullback (1989-92)

COACHES:
· James “Boots” Donnelly – Austin Peay State University (1977-78), Middle Tennessee State University (1979-98); 154-94-1
· Jess Dow – Southern Connecticut State University (1948-65); 108-40-6

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Comments

  • Greg

    I attended WVU during the Cignetti -Gardner era, arguably the bleakest time in the history of WVU sports. Like David, I didn't particularly care for him as a coach. But, he did recruit some fine players for Coach Nehlen to build the foundation of his Hall of Fame career with. So that being said, I'm glad Frank is getting some recognition of his own now. Congrats.

    • Habib Haddad

      Totally agree, Greg. If you remember, that was the time that our great band was handed the moniker "The pride of West Virginia." Those are but memories as we play in the Big XII now.

  • FungoJoe

    Congratulations to Cignetti. An honor he deserves.

  • Red Dwarf

    If I recall correctly (and I believe I am) Frank was fighting cancer during the last couple years he was at WVU. He may not have won a lot of games at old Mountaineer Field, but he won the big one against The Big C.

    • Alum

      You remember correctly and WVU kept him on as he went through treatment.

  • big tom

    where's all the second chancers,,?

  • David

    I could not stand the guy. I think it is one of the best sporting days of my life when he left.

    • WILLIAM

      AT LEAST HE WAS A CLASSY GUY WITH GREAT CHARACTER! LOOK WHAT WVU HAS NOW IN BOTH BB AND FOOTBALL.