Part of The Analyst’s FCS college football series called “By the Numbers,” which analyzes data to help tell the story of the Football Championship Subdivision.

With all the retirements of FCS college football coaching legends that have come in recent years – and even in recent months – it begs the question: What active coaches are now the leaders for career wins in the NCAA’s Division I subdivision?

Tim Murphy, for instance, had hit the 200-win mark at Harvard since returning to the level in 1994 after five seasons coaching in the FBS at Cincinnati (he also had been at Maine in the late 1980s). But after leading the Crimson to an 8-2 record and a share of the Ivy League title last fall, he wrapped up his career with 215 FCS wins. (Full list of 2023-24 FCS head coaching changes)

That opened the FCS career wins leaderboard going into the 2024 season. The coaches on it would need longevity, of course, and the new top 10 features just that – in fact, Monmouth’s Kevin Callahan tops the list and is the longest-tenured head coach in the subdivision following Jim Parady’s retirement at Marist after the 2023 season.

It must be noted among the talented coaches at the FCS level, one who would be on this list if not for tragedy is Dartmouth’s Buddy Teevens. He died last September as the result of injuries sustained in a bicycle accident earlier in the year.

Teevens led Dartmouth to 117 wins and five Ivy League titles during his two stints at the school. He also spent time as an FBS head coach at Stanford and Tulane, but if you knew Teevens, you knew his heart was with Dartmouth and the Football Championship Subdivision when it came to football.

The coaches who have chosen to spend most or all of their careers in the FCS have made less money with less spotlight, but have found tremendous success and coaching satisfaction while impacting thousands of lives.

The following 10 college football coaches have combined for more than 1,300 FCS victories as the subdivision’s active leaders (FCS-level wins only):

Active Coaches With Most FCS Career Wins (NCAA FCS Level-Only)

1. Kevin Callahan (182 Wins)

FCS Record: 182-142 (31 seasons)

FCS School: Monmouth (1993-present)

The Skinny: Callahan is the only head football coach this New Jersey school has ever known since its program’s start in 1993 with an FCS (then Division I-AA) non-scholarship season. But it didn’t take long before the Hawks won their first conference title (Northeast) in ‘96.

The best season in Monmouth history occurred in 2019 with a Big South championship, an FCS playoff win in the first round and a No. 12 final national ranking in the Stats Perform Top 25 Poll. The Hawks now play in the Coastal Athletic Association.

Kevin Callahan is Monmouth’s only head football coach since 1993 and the longest-tenured in the FCS. (Monmouth Athletics)

2. Mark Farley (180 Wins)

FCS Record: 180-103 (23 seasons)

FCS School: Northern Iowa (2001-present)

The Skinny: Farley, born in Iowa, has been on the UNI campus for most of the past 40 years. As a player in the mid-1980s, he started at inside linebacker and led the team in tackles as a junior and senior. The moment his playing career wrapped up, he was added to the coaching staff as a grad assistant, then as the linebackers coach, and spent the next 10 years there until Kansas came calling in the late 1990s.

Since returning to UNI as head coach, he’s guided 13 FCS playoff appearances and 19 winning seasons, quite an accomplishment for a program that plays in the rough-and-tumble Missouri Valley Football Conference.

South Dakota, under coach Bob Nielson, went 10-3 in 2023, finishing No. 4 in the Stats Perform FCS Top 25 Poll. (USD Athletics)

3. Greg Gattuso (147 Wins)

FCS Record: 147-93 (22 seasons)

FCS Schools: UAlbany (2014-present) and Duquesne (1993-2004)

The Skinny: Gattuso played at Penn State for Joe Paterno, and while he has had some memorable stints as an assistant coach at Pittsburgh and Maryland, he seems to have a heart for the smaller school campuses. His first FCS stint was at Duquesne, where his Dukes won more than 75% of their games.

After a 10-year hiatus from the subdivision, he returned at UAlbany in time for the Great Danes’ move into the CAA.

For the record, yes, the Gattuso family owns Great Danes as pet K-9s.

4. Bobby Hauck (129 Wins)

FCS Record: 129-36 (13 seasons)

FCS School: Montana (2003-2009, 2018-present)

The skinny: Hauck is the Big Sky Conference’s winningest coach, and his return to Montana almost immediately re-introduced the Grizzles back into the national championship discussion. In his first stint, he led them to 80 wins and a conference title and playoff appearance in each of his seven seasons from 2003-09. (The Griz were the winningest FCS program during the 2000s decade.)

In 2023, he again led Montana to the Big Sky championship as well as a 13-2 record and a national runner-up finish to South Dakota State.

In addition to being among the FCS career wins leaders, his winning percentage of 78.2 is clearly tops among the candidates with five-plus seasons at one school.

Montana finished 13-2 as the 2023 FCS national runner-up under coach Bobby Hauck. (Montana Athletics)

5. Danny Rocco (126 Wins)

FCS Record: 126-71-0 (17 seasons)

FCS Schools: VMI (2023-present), Delaware (2017-2021), Richmond (2012-2016) and Liberty (2006-2011)

The Skinny: Rocco has been a consistent winner: He won four Big South titles at Liberty and took Richmond (three times) and Delaware (twice) to the FCS playoffs. Last fall, in his first season at VMI – a program that only recently has risen from being one of the tougher places to win games – his team was only a few points away from a winning season (the Keydets finished 5-6).

Rocco also has been an assistant in the NFL and at FBS programs that include Penn State, Virginia, Maryland, Texas and Boston College.

The Next Tier

6. Jerry Schmitt, Duquesne (120-64, 19 seasons – 2005-present)

7. Jason Simpson, UT Martin (115-87, 18 seasons – 2006-present)

8. Chris Hatcher, Samford/Murray State/Georgia Southern (102-88, 17 seasons – 2007-present)

T9. Brock Spack, Illinois State (101-70, 15 seasons – 2009-present)

T9. Russ Huesman, Richmond/Chattanooga (101-70, 15 seasons – 2009-present)

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