Joe Pannunzio is in his second year at Alabama, joining the Crimson Tide coaching staff as director of football operations in February, 2011.
Pannunzio has nearly three decades of college football experience. He spent the previous five years at the University of Miami and was the head coach at Murray State the previous six seasons. His primary role at Alabama is to oversee the administration and operation of the football program.
Pannunzio served as the tight ends/special teams coordinator at Miami from 2006-10. The Hurricanes made four bowl appearances in his five years in Coral Gables, including trips to the 2006 MPC Computers Bowl, the 2008 Emerald Bowl, the 2009 Champs Sports Bowl and the 2010 Sun Bowl.
During his tenure at Miami, Pannunzio coached the likes of Greg Olsen, a first-round NFL Draft pick of the Chicago Bears. He also tutored Jimmy Graham, a third-round pick of the New Orleans Saints, and Dedrick Epps, who was selected in the seventh round by the San Diego Chargers.
While the head coach at Murray State from 2000-05, Pannunzio led the Racers to the 2002 Ohio Valley championship, joining Mike Gottfried, Frank Beamer and Houston Nutt as one of the four coaches to win a conference title at the school. Pannunzio also led Murray State to the 2002 NCAA Championship Subdivision playoffs.
Prior to becoming a head coach for the Racers, Pannunzio spent five years working for Tommy Tuberville at Mississippi and Auburn. Before that, he served four years under Jim Wacker at TCU and Minnesota. He also coached for seven years at Mesa (Colo.) College, where the team appeared in the NAIA National Championship Game twice and led the nation in total offense and scoring once. His two stints at Mesa wrapped around two years at Kansas, where he worked under Gottfried.
The Pueblo, Colo., native was a standout quarterback at Southern Colorado, where he graduated with a degree in physical education in 1982. He was named honorable mention all-conference in 1980 and led his team to a No. 9 ranking in NAIA Division I.
He and his wife Rita have two daughters, Angela and Nico, and a son Mario.