Sports, Football, Top Story, Fall

Jeff Hafley Leaves BC for Green Bay Packers After Four Seasons on The Heights

Boston College football head coach Jeff Hafley is leaving the Heights after four seasons with the program to become the next defensive coordinator of the Green Bay Packers, according to a BC Athletics press release.

“I loved my four years at Boston College,” Hafley said in the release. “This is an exceptional place to coach given the caliber of student-athletes we recruit, the facilities, and the support from the University and BC fans. I will miss the players who gave so much of themselves these past four years, and my wife Gina and I will certainly miss the BC community and the many friends we have made here.”

BC has not yet appointed an interim head coach and is immediately beginning a national search for the next head coach, according to Director of Athletics Blake James.

“As a world-class institution with a strong tradition and a commitment to excellence, we are confident that we will find an exceptional new leader for our football program, and we will continue to do everything we can to support our student-athletes,” James said in the release.

After previously working in various assistant defensive coaching roles in the NFL and as Ohio State’s co-defensive coordinator, Hafley was hired as head coach by then-Director of Athletics Martin Jarmond on Dec. 14, 2019. 

Through four seasons at BC, Hafley guided the Eagles to a 22–26 overall record and a 12–22 ACC record. 

Under Hafley’s guidance, the Eagles qualified for three bowl games, including in the 2020 season, during which the program opted out of bowl selection. BC also qualified for the 2021 Military Bowl, which was canceled due to COVID-19 complications, and the 2023 Fenway Bowl, where the Eagles defeated No. 17 SMU 23–14

In 2020, Hafley led BC to a 6–5 season, in which the Eagles allowed 63 fewer yards per game than the previous year. Seven Eagles were also named All-ACC team members, and three more were given honorable mentions.

Despite earning its first 4–0 start since 2007 and narrowly losing to then-No. 25 Clemson in Death Valley, BC finished the 2021 season with a 6–6 record. The Eagles also ended the season as the ACC’s third-ranked defense.

Hafley’s 2022 campaign told a different story, though, when the Eagles finished with a 3–9 record—their worst since 2015. Opening the season with a home loss to Rutgers, Hafley’s Eagles went on to incur blowout losses at the hands of Florida State, Clemson, Wake Forest, and Notre Dame, while also suffering a defeat to Connecticut for the first time in program history. 

Hafley attempted to right the ship in 2023, but the campaign was far from smooth sailing. In Week One, the Eagles lost to Northern Illinois, flipping between expected starting quarterback Emmett Morehead and eventual starting quarterback Thomas Castellanos throughout the game. 

In Week Two, the Eagles narrowly escaped Alumni Stadium with a 31–28 win over FCS opponent Holy Cross. In Week Three, the Eagles flashed some promise and nearly completed an upset over then-No. 3 ranked Florida State, but ultimately lost with a program-record 18 penalties. 

After a 28-point loss to Louisville and a 1–3 start to the season, 2023 began to look like a rerun of the 2022 campaign. Then, five straight wins later, the Eagles found themselves with a 6–3 record and a potential path to the ACC Championship game. 

But under the coaching of Hafley, the Eagles finished the season with three straight losses, closing out another six-win regular season. 

Despite its underwhelming conclusion, the Eagles finished their season on a high note, picking up Hafley’s second ranked win as BC’s head coach in the 2023 Fenway Bowl against No. 17 SMU.

Hafley was set to welcome the nation’s 69th-ranked recruiting class and the 44th-ranked transfer portal class ahead of the upcoming 2024 season, according to 247Sports.

With Hafley’s abrupt departure from the team, current players will receive an extra 30 days to enter the transfer portal.

January 31, 2024