Tony Pecoraro is in his first season on Les Miles’ Kansas football staff as a senior analyst for defense. He came to Kansas after serving as Florida Atlantic University’s football defensive coordinator and linebacker coach in 2018.
Pecoraro joined the Southern Miss staff in 2016. While in Hattiesburg, Pecoraro guided an USM defense that ranked No. 20 in total defense in 2017 and No. 45 in scoring defense. His two-year work showed a 30-spot increase in total defense and nine-spot increase in scoring defense. Southern Miss played in the 2016 R&L Carrier New Orleans Bowl where the defense was led by All-Conference defensive linemen Dylan Bradley and Xavier Thigpen, and linebackers D’Nerius Antoine and Elijah Parker. The 2017 Southern Miss team participated in the Walk-on Independence Bowl and were led defensively by C-USA selections Thigpen and Curtis Mikell.
Before going to USM, Pecoraro served as Alcorn State’s defensive coordinator, a position he held for four seasons. His efforts at Alcorn State helped to lead the Braves to two Southwestern Athletic Conference championships and was instrumental in helping lead the Braves to the 2014 HBCU National Championship.
Prior to his stint in Lorman, Pecoraro served a two-year stint at North Alabama as defensive coordinator. Pecoraro had an integral part in North Alabama’s success, producing five All-Americans and 11 All-Gulf States Conference players. In both seasons at North Alabama, Pecoraro helped lead the Lions to back-to-back appearances in the NCAA Division II playoffs.
Previous to North Alabama, Pecoraro earned his stripes during eight years of collegiate coaching, including five seasons over two separate stints at Florida State (2002-03, 2005-08)
During his tenure at FSU, Pecoraro was a part of Atlantic Coast Conference championship teams in 2002-03. The Seminoles played in five bowl games during Pecoraro’s time in Tallahassee, including the Nokia Sugar Bowl in 2003, the FedEx Orange Bowl in 2004, the Music City Bowl in 2007, the Champs Sports Bowl in 2008 and the Gator Bowl in 2009.
Pecoraro began his collegiate coaching career at Webber International University in Babson Park, Fla., where he worked as a graduate assistant from 2004-05. In 2006, Pecoraro was promoted to a full- time position, coaching the defensive line and serving as recruiting coordinator. During this time, Pecoraro also earned his M.B.A.
In his first experience with FSU, Pecoraro served as a student assistant from the 2002-03 season working directly with the quarter- backs. He also earned his Bachelor’s degree in Sports Management.
Pecoraro is married to the former Tania Fernandez, and have a son, Rocky Tarim and a daughter, Isabella Amore.