ACC

Duke wants David Cutcliffe as its coach for 4 more seasons

With Duke’s football program having added consistent on-field success to its usual academic prowess, the school and coach David Cutcliffe agreed to another contract extension on Friday.

Duke’s coach since the 2008 season, Cutcliffe has a new deal that keeps him under contract with the Blue Devils through June 30, 2023. Other terms were not made public.

“To be sure, there is no better fit for Duke University and its prestigious football program than David Cutcliffe,” Duke athletics director Kevin White said in a statement. “David has set the standard of achievement – academically, athletically and socially – and what he has accomplished over the past 11 years is truly exceptional. His passion for excellence and vision for the program, create the right combination to guide us well into his second decade on campus. In my humble opinion, David Cutcliffe is clearly the very best college football coach in the country.”

Cutcliffe is entering his 12th season at Duke. No other current ACC football coach has been in charge of his program longer.

Cutcliffe led the Blue Devils to an 8-5 record last season, including a bowl appearance for the sixth time in the last seven seasons. Duke has won its last three bowl games -- the 2015 Pinstripe, 2017 Quick Lane and 2018 Independence.

Prior to Cutcliffe’s arrival, Duke hadn’t played in a bowl game since the 1995 Hall of Fame Bowl or won a bowl game since the 1961 Cotton Bowl.

In the classroom, Duke’s football program finished in the top 10 percent nationally in the NCAA’s Academic Progress Report to received a Public Recognition Award for the 14th consecutive year. Over the past seven seasons, starting in 2012, the seven Academic All-American players Duke produced equals the rest of the ACC combined.

“Coach Cutcliffe has an unprecedented record of success both on and off the field, and I am delighted that he will remain at Duke for at least another four years,” Duke president Vincent E. Price said in a statement. “His commitment to academic excellence and the personal growth of his student-athletes reflects our core values and sets an example for Duke’s peers.”

The 64-year-old Cutcliffe owns a 67-72 record with the Blue Devils. After posting losing records in his first five seasons, Duke is 46-32 over the last six seasons. That includes five seasons with winning records.

In the eight seasons prior to Cutcliffe’s arrival for the 2008 season, Duke won just 10 games.

Cutcliffe compiled a 44-29 record in six seasons at Mississippi from 1998-04, his only other college head coaching experience prior to Duke. His overall coaching record is 111-101.

“First and foremost, we have sincere appreciation for President Price and Dr. White for their trust in us to lead Duke University’s football program,” Cutcliffe said in a statement. “For over a decade now, the administrative support has been tremendous and has enabled us to solidify the foundation of principles we believe in. Duke is a special place, and to be quite simple about it, we could not envision being anywhere else.”

Duke last extended Cutcliffe’s contract in May 2017, adding two years to cover the 2020 season.

The Blue Devils open this season Aug. 31 against Alabama in the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game at Atlanta’s Mercedes-Benz Stadium.

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An Illinois native, Steve Wiseman has covered Duke athletics since 2010 for the Durham Herald-Sun and Raleigh News & Observer. Prior to his arrival in Durham, he worked for newspapers in Columbia and Spartanburg, S.C., Biloxi, Miss., and Charlotte covering beats including the NFL’s Carolina Panthers and New Orleans Saints, University of South Carolina athletics and the S.C. General Assembly.
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