Bill Sheridan named defensive line coach at Air Force

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Colorado Springs, COLO. Bill Sheridan has joined the Air Force football staff as the defensive line coach, according to an announcement today from head coach Troy Calhoun. Sheridan comes to the Academy from Boston College where he was the linebackers coach in 2018 and defensive coordinator/linebackers coach in 2019.

“The United States Air Force Academy is beyond fortunate to have Bill and Jaycine Sheridan join the Falcons. Bill is a proven winner in every regard, as a coach, recruiter and representative,” Calhoun said.

Sheridan coached a linebacker unit that featured all-Atlantic Coast Conference performer Connor Strachan, who led the team with 91 tackles and signed a NFL free agent contract with the Jacksonville Jaguars. He also oversaw the development of Isaiah McDuffie and Max Richardson into two the team’s top tacklers and playmakers.

Sheridan spent the previous 13 seasons as an assistant coach and defensive coordinator in the National Football League for four teams before joining Boston College.

Sheridan helped the Detroit Lions to a pair of playoff appearances between 2014 and 2017 while coaching All-Pro linebacker DeAndre Levy in 2014. He was also the Tampa Bay Buccaneers defensive coordinator from 2012-13 where he helped develop two-time All-Pro and Pro Bowl defensive lineman Gerald McCoy, All-Pro cornerback Darrelle Revis and All-Pro linebacker Lavonte David.

Sheridan spent two years as the linebackers coach with the Miami Dolphins from 2010-11, training two-time All-Pro and Pro Bowl linebacker Cameron Wake. His NFL career began as the linebackers coach for the New York Giants from 2005-08 before becoming defensive coordinator in 2009. Sheridan helped the Giants to four consecutive playoff appearances, including a Super Bowl XLII victory over the New England Patriots. He coached Pro Bowl linebacker Antonio Pierce while there.

Sheridan spent three seasons at Michigan from 2002-04 under head coach Lloyd Carr, including one as linebackers coach (2002), when he coached all-Big Ten member Victor Hobson. He spent two seasons as the defensive line coach (2003-04). Additionally, he served as the recruiting coordinator for two years (2002-03). He helped lead Michigan to Big Ten titles and Rose Bowl appearances in 2003 and 2004. Prior to his stint at Michigan, he coached at Notre Dame in 2001 as the safeties and special teams coach.

Sheridan worked at Michigan State from 1998-00 as the linebackers coach, coaching two years under head coach Nick Saban. He oversaw the development of first-team All-American Julian Peterson (1999), who produced a MSU record 30 tackles for loss, 15 sacks and was named most valuable player of the Spartans’ victory in the 2000 Citrus Bowl. He also coached all-Big Ten performer Josh Thornhill (2000).

Sheridan was an assistant coach at Army for six years, including four as the linebackers coach from 1992-95 and two as defensive backs coach from 1996-97. He helped Army finish No. 24 in the final USA Today Coaches poll in 1996 with a 10-2 record and appearance in the Independence Bowl. The Black Knights won five consecutive Army-Navy games during his first five seasons in West Point.

He also coached linebackers at Maine (1987-88) and Cincinnati (1989-91). Sheridan started his career as an assistant coach at Shrine Catholic (Mich.) High School from 1981-84. He moved into the college ranks as a graduate assistant at Michigan (1985-86) under the legendary Bo Shembechler.

Sheridan is a native of Detroit, Mich., and earned a bachelor’s degree in physical education from Grand Valley State in 1982. He and his wife, Jaycine, have four children, Joseph, Nicholas, Mark and Natalie.