New Hampshire Football Report

McDonnell returns to football

DURHAM — Sean McDonnell was back in his normal routine this week, which means he was back to being the head football coach at the University of New Hampshire.

McDonnell stepped away from his job as UNH’s head coach last August to deal with a health issue, a health issue later revealed to be cancer. Assistant coach Ricky Santos — a former UNH quarterback — was named interim head coach, and led the Wildcats to a 6-5 record last season (5-3 in the Colonial Athletic Association).

Sitting behind the desk in his office at the UNH Fieldhouse on Friday, McDonnell made it clear he plans to be back running the show when spring practice begins on March 31. He also said he plans to be on the sideline when UNH opens the season at Kansas on Sept. 5.

“I had always planned that I would come back,” McDonnell said. “The reason I was always planning that is that was the light at the end of the tunnel. Everybody who had been through this surgery who I talked to and had been through this process told me how it was gonna go and that I would be ready to go seven to nine weeks after the surgery. Now you gotta be able to know, ‘Can I still do it at the same level I’ve always done it?’ That’s what I’m going to find out in the spring and what I’m going to find out in the fall.


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