Delaware State University football has continued to make additions to its coaching staff this season, most recently hiring Renato Diaz as the new running backs coach. Diaz has more than 12 years of coaching experience and is a graduate of the NCAA Advanced Coaches Academy.
Delaware State University made some additional personnel moves this past week as Head Coach Al Lavan appointed Renato Diaz the running backs coach of the Hornets.
Diaz, who has more than 12 years of college coaching experience, most recently served three years as running backs coach and recruiting coordinator at Florida A&M, DSU’s Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference rival.
“Coach Diaz brings a wealth of coaching and administrative experience, in addition to a familiarity with the conference, to our staff,” Lavan said. “He has enjoyed success at every stop in his career and we are fortunate to have someone of his caliber join our team.”
During the 2007 season, Diaz was credited with the success of Florida A&M freshman tailback Philip Sylvester, who was named MEAC Rookie-of-the-Year after rushing for nearly 900 yards and leading the league in all-purpose yards with 164.3 per game.
“Coach Lavan is doing a tremendous job at Delaware State and I’m honored to join his staff,” Diaz said. “I’m extremely impressed with the university and its commitment to its teams.
“I’m looking forward to working with the staff to continue the success the Hornets have enjoyed the last few years.”
Diaz began his coaching career at the University of South Florida, his alma mater, from 1996 to 1998, where he was an assistant offensive coordinator.
In 1998, he was promoted to tight ends coach and served as coordinator for recruiting and special teams. That season, USF led the nation in total punt return yards and was seventh in net punting, limiting opponents to 2.1 yards per return. During the 1999 season, USF was eighth in the nation in net punting and 12th in kickoff returns.
Diaz also served as the running backs coach at Columbia University in New York in the 2000 season. There, he coached Johnathan Reese, the school’s first 1,000-yard rusher, who was an All-Ivy League First Team selection after leading the conference with 1,330 yards rushing.
From 2001 to 2003, Diaz was running backs coach at Florida International University, where he coached Rashod Smith, a Division I-AA All-Independent First Team selection at running back in 2001.
In the summer of 2003, Diaz worked a brief stint with the NFL’s New York Jets during training camp, working with the offense staff in all phases of preparation for the season.
Diaz also served as running backs coach and special teams consultant at Widener University in Chester, Pa., in 2004. That season, the team was 11th in the nation in kickoff returns, at 23.3 yards per game.
He is also a 2005 graduate of the NCAA Advanced Coaches Academy.