First Endowed Chair in College's History [more…]
Shapiro Peña Succeeds F. Christopher Tahk [more…]
2003-2004 Individual and Team Achievements [more…]
High School Students Compete in Clay Olympics [more…]
Only Windows Draws More Visitors [more…]
Paul Shaffner, Head Football Coach
IT'S GREAT TO BE BACK IN WESTERN NEW YORK. I grew up here, graduating from Lancaster High School, where I played football for my first mentor, Coach Joe Foyle. When I packed my bags and moved to Ithaca College to study physical education, I had every intention of returning to Western New York to be a phys ed teacher and high school football coach. However, as life changes, so did I.
In college, I had the privilege to play for the legendary Jim Butterfield and our very own Jerry Boyes, and we captured the 1979 Division III national championship. Upon graduating, I took a job as defensive coordinator for a small Division III college in Maine. Three years later, I moved to Penn State and worked with two more legends--Joe Paterno and Jerry Sandusky. After two years and another national championship, I moved to Lafayette College, a Division I-AA program in Easton, Pennsylvania, where I spent 12 years as a linebacker coach and defensive coordinator, winning three league titles. In 2000, I became the head football coach at Glenville State College in West Virginia, where we captured a conference championship in 2001. This past spring, my life changed again when I became the head football coach for Buffalo State.
My wife, Donna, has been a strong supporter of my career and a real inspiration. I met her almost 16 years ago when I asked her if she would like to go with me to scout a football game and, surprisingly, she said yes. Donna is the ultimate football wife--in fact, she was president of the American Football Coaches Wives' Association in 2000. I also have three wonderful children: Jessica, 12; Samantha, 9; and Jacob, 7.
My football philosophy is centered on four principles: responsibility, commitment, faith, and family. Taking responsibility for ourselves and our actions is critical. Being committed to the things we believe in--our studies, our college, our community--is vital. Having faith in ourselves, our teammates, and our mission is imperative. But perhaps most important is family--being ever mindful that the actions of any one of us affects the others. These combined values create a solid bond that will not be torn apart.
I have had the honor of working for many outstanding coaches. Each of them believed that championship teams are built on integrity. Respect, honesty, and loyalty will be the cornerstones of this football program. Our student-athletes are our No. 1 asset and are the heart of this family.
Football is an extension of the learning experience. Academic success is our top priority; without it, there is no football. Our players' primary obligation to themselves and the program is their education. They must succeed in the classroom before they can compete on the field. Education is vital; it will help mold these young men into viable members of society.
I am very excited to be working for Buffalo State College. I strongly believe that together we can reestablish the football program. I know that with your help and support, we will "Restore the Roar!"