Led by head coach Jay Civetti and his staff, the Tufts University football program is in the middle of a great run of success.
With last season’s 7-2 record, Tufts earned its fourth consecutive winning season for the first time since 1988-91. The Jumbo program’s 25-9 mark over those four seasons represents the most wins by the team during a four-year period since 1979-82.
The Jumbos competed for a conference championship last fall and finished third in the competitive New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC). It was just the sixth time since 1960 that a Jumbo team won seven or more games. They were undefeated at home (4-0) and were ranked #7 in the final New England Division III poll.
The 2018 team featured NESCAC Co-Offensive Player of the Year Ryan McDonald at quarterback, who also received the Gridiron Club of Greater Boston’s Joe Zabilski Award as New England's top offensive player in Divisions II-III. Linebacker Greg Holt was named to the prestigious New England Football Writers’ Association College Division All-New England team.
Named the Gridiron Club of Greater Boston’s Division III Coach of the Year for 2016, Civetti was presented the Murray Lewis Award by the Boston Chapter of the Eastern Association of Intercollegiate Football Officials last fall. The honor is bestowed upon an individual who has made a positive contribution to New England football. Coach Civetti is currently serving as the 2nd Vice President of the Jack Grinold Eastern Massachusetts chapter of the National Football Foundation.
Civetti was promoted to head coach of the Tufts football program in January 2011. A native of nearby Wellesley, Massachusetts, he came to Tufts in 2008 as offensive coordinator. He directed a record-setting passing attack in 2010. After three seasons, he was named the 35th head coach in the long history of Jumbo Football.
Under Civetti's direction, the Tufts program aims to succeed on the field, in class and in the community. Eight senior members of the 2018 team earned National Football Foundation & College Hall of Fame Hampshire Honor Society recognition for their academic achievement. Among the community service organizations that the Jumbos support are the Somerville Homeless Coalition, the American Cancer Society, Team IMPACT, Boston Food Bank, Special Olympics, and the Alzheimer’s Association.
Civetti joined the Jumbos after working at North Carolina State University and Boston College under Tom O'Brien for five seasons from 2003-07. Joining Boston College’s football staff as a graduate assistant coach in 2003, he was a recruiting assistant for the first two years and then worked with offensive coordinator Dana Bible as an offensive assistant for the next two seasons. While at Boston College Civetti helped coach quarterback Matt Ryan, a future NFL Most Valuable Player. He also worked as a special teams’ assistant. Civetti earned a master’s degree in education at BC in 2006.
One of the NESCAC’s best offensive linemen at Trinity College from 1997-2000, Civetti started all 32 games of his Bantam career and captained the team as a senior. He played for two seasons under legendary coach Don Miller, whose teams posted 174 victories at Trinity. Civetti graduated from Trinity in 2001 with a degree in English.
Civetti attended the Belmont Hill School nearby. Jay, his wife Kate, and their daughters Charlotte and Audrey, live in Newton.