|Title:||Assistant Coach - Quarterbacks|
2014 marks Matt Gardner's seventh season as an assistant coach for the Sacred Heart University Pioneers. Gardner will work with the quarterbacks again this fall.
Under Coach Gardner, first-year QB R.J Noel had one of the best single seasons in Sacred Heart history in 2014. The redshirt freshman tossed for 2,203 yards and rushed for 689 more, while accounting for 31 total touchdowns. Noel was named Northeast Conference Rookie of the Week seven times on his way to NEC Rookie of the Year honors. Noel tossed only 9 interceptions and his 23:9 touchdown to interception ratio was tops in the Conference.
Upon his arrival at SHU, Gardner worked on the defensive side of the ball coaching the outside linebackers before moving to the offensive coaching the wide receivers.
He came to Sacred Heart after four coaching seasons with the Colorado Crush of the Arena Football League where he coached the wide receivers, linebackers and oversaw all aspects of special teams.
Following the 2004 and 2005 Crush seasons, Gardner served as linebackers coach at Division III Fitchburg State College in Fitchburg, Mass. He helped the New England Football Conference school reach back-to-back appearances in the NEFC championship game and ECAC North Atlantic Bowl. In 2005, the Falcons were the conference's top ranked defense.
Prior to joining the Crush, Gardner spent one season coaching wide receivers and assisting with special teams at his alma mater, Division III Randolph-Macon College in Ashland, Va. Gardner played wide receiver for four seasons at Randolph-Macon from 1999-2002.
Gardner earned his Master's Degree from Sacred Heart University in May, 2011 and he and his wife currently reside in Norwalk, CT.