USAFA — The Air Force football team will have a new defensive coordinator heading into the 2022 season.
On Thursday, the University of Virginia announced that former Falcon defensive coordinator John Rudzinski would be leaving Air Force for the same position with the Cavaliers.
Rudzinski, a 2005 graduate of the Air Force Academy, was a two-time captain for the Falcons, where he earned the team's Most Valuable Player honor.
Coach Rud, as they called him up on the hill, spent the past 14 seasons as a member of the Air Force coaching staff, including the past four years as the Falcons’ defensive coordinator. During his time at Air Force, he has also worked as the program’s recruiting coordinator, outside linebacker coach, and defensive backs coach.
Air Force finished the 2021 season with a 10-3 record, winning the SERVPRO First Responders Bowl over Louisville, 31 to 28 - their second bowl win in the past three seasons. Coach Rud's defense ranked No. 4 nationally in total defense (296.5 yards per game allowed) and No. 16 in scoring defense (19.8 points per game allowed).
In 2020, Rudzinski's defense also finished third nationally in points allowed (15 PPG) -- the team's lowest scoring average since 1997.
There is no word on who will replace Rudzinski as the Falcons' defensive coordinator.