Bryan Bossard, who starred on defense for the Blue Hens in the late-1980s before serving three stints on the University of Delaware coaching staff, rejoined his alma mater as wide receivers coach in February, 2014.
“We are thrilled to welcome Bryan and his family back to the University of Delaware,” said Delaware head coach Dave Brock. “I’ve known Bryan for a long time and I’ve always been very impressed by what he has been able to achieve professionally. What made him most attractive to us was his passion for Delaware football and the University of Delaware. I’m excited for him to be able to share the rich tradition and history of UD football that he has lived with our current players.”
Bossard (pronounced “bo-sard”), a native of Dover, Del., returned to Delaware after serving four years (2010-13) as offensive coordinator and wide receivers coach at Bucknell University for head coach Joe Susan, a 1978 Delaware graduate who lettered for the Blue Hens in 1975-76.
“I have been fortunate to be able to coach with Bryan Bossard for the last four years,” said Susan. “He was a friend before we began to work together. He is a strong family man, and in returning to Delaware things become much simpler for Bryan, his wife Kimber, and their two sons. He is a very good fundamental coach. His offensive knowledge is the result of a combination of his experiences at a variety of programs utilizing multiple schemes. He will be a positive role model for his players both on and off the field and will be an important component of Dave Brock's effort to bring championship football back to the special place that is the University of Delaware.”
Bossard brings 25 years of experience coaching at the NCAA Division I Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) and Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) levels.
In his 14 years as a player and coach at Delaware, the Blue Hens put together a cumulative record of 115-56-1 (.671) and made seven NCAA Tournament appearances.
“I’m very excited that Coach Brock has invited me and my family back to the staff,” said Bossard. “Even though I have been gone for 10 years, I’ve always loved Delaware. The opportunity to return to my alma mater was something I couldn’t pass up. I’ve known Coach Brock for a long time and have always respected him as a coach, a recruiter, and as a person. I love what he is doing and I’m excited about where he is taking this program. I can’t wait to get going and do whatever I can to help achieve that goal.”
During his first year back in 2014, Bossard played a key a role in the development of first team All-Colonial Athletic Association wide receiver Michael Johnson, who ranked among the CAA leaders with 78 receptions for 830 yards. He ranks as one of UD's all-time great receivers.
A standout at Dover (Del.) High School, Bossard came north and quickly made a name for himself on head coach Tubby Raymond’s squads, lettering for three seasons at cornerback in 1985-88 and earning the team's defensive Most Valuable Player award as a senior when he was a second team All-Yankee Conference selection and piled up 122 tackles. He earned his degree in agricultural business management from Delaware in 1989.
In addition to his two stints on the coaching staff at Bucknell, Bossard was on the staffs at Pittsburgh (2008-09) and Maryland (2005-07). At both places, he coached the wide receivers and returners while recruiting in the Maryland, Delaware, Virginia, and Washington, D.C. areas.
While at Pitt, Bossard worked under former NFL coach Dave Wannstedt. Bossard had previously worked for Wannstedt in a pair of NFL summer coaching internships with the Chicago Bears in 1996-97. Pittsburgh posted a solid 19-7 record and appeared in a pair of bowl games during his tenure.
Two receivers Bossard coached were selected in the 2009 NFL Draft. Maryland's Darrius Heyward-Bey was a first-round pick of the Oakland Raiders, while Pittsburgh's Derek Kinder was drafted by the Chicago Bears in the seventh round. Heyward-Bey was a Freshman All-American under Bossard's watch in 2006. A year later he also helped Terps wideout and future NFLer LaQuan Williams earn Freshman All-America accolades.
Prior to his time at Maryland, Bossard spent three years coaching the receivers and returners and serving as passing game coordinator at Delaware in 2002-04 under K.C. Keeler. He helped lead the Blue Hens to the 2003 NCAA I-AA (FCS) national title with a 15-1 mark and led the 2004 squad to a berth in the second round of the NCAA Tournament. During Delaware’s championship season, the Hens had three different receivers catch 50 passes or more.
Bossard was also a member of the Blue Hens' coaching staff from 1994-98 in the same capacity, leading Delaware to three consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances under Raymond, a College Football Hall of Fame member who won 300 career games for the Blue Hens. The 1997 squad went 12-2 and advanced to the national semifinals.
Bossard broke into the collegiate coaching ranks as a graduate assistant at Delaware in 1990. He then coached defensive backs at Morehouse College (1991) and West Chester (Pa.) University (spring 1992) before arriving at Bucknell for a two-year stint where he worked with the defensive backs and returners.
In 1999, Bossard coached the receivers at Army before moving on to a defensive back coaching position at Wyoming for two seasons in 2000-01.
Bossard and his wife, Kimber, have two sons, Xen (11) and Xyon (8).