Greg Debeljak, the most accomplished coach in the history of the Case Western Reserve University football program, was named to the position on March 24, 2004. In his 16 seasons with the team, he has compiled an impressive overall record of 119-47 (.717) and led the Spartans to a 38-game regular season winning streak from 2006-10.
Debeljak guided the Spartans to three consecutive undefeated (10-0) regular seasons, NCAA Playoff appearances and University Athletic Association titles from 2007-09. And from 2007 through 2019, Case Western Reserve posted an overall record of 106-30 (.779), earning Debeljak PAC Coach of the Year honors in 2017 and 2019 and he and his assistants the UAA Coaching Staff of the Year award for three straight seasons from 2007-09 and again in 2011, 2016 and 2017. Additionally, Case Western Reserve has been ranked in the top 25 in the nation in nine of the last 13 seasons, including its highest mark of No. 7 during the final regular season American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) poll in 2009. Debeljak's .717 career winning percentage ranks as the 16th-best among active Division III coaches.
In 2019, Debeljak led the Spartans to the PAC Championship for the second time in three years, and earned a bid to the NCAA Playoffs for the fifth time in program history. He helped junior wide receiver Colt Morgan earn an honorable mention to the D3football.com All-America team, while three Spartans were selected as CoSIDA Academic All-Americans.
Debeljak became the first coach in program history to reach the 100-win mark with the team, hitting the milestone during the team's victory over Westminster College on November 4th, 2017. The triumph was a part of one of the best seasons in the program's history, as Debeljak led the Spartans to an 11-1 overall record, with the team making the playoffs for the fourth time ever, and reaching the second round of the tournament for the second time. The Spartans won both the PAC and UAA Championships in 2017, leading to Debeljak being named both the PAC and UAA Coach of the Year. He coached senior center Gage Blair to AFCA All-America honors, while Blair, senior quarterback Rob Cuda and senior running back Jacob Burke were each named to the D3football.com All-Region team.
Debeljak also was selected as one of five finalists in Division III for the Liberty Mutual Coach of the Year Award for three straight years (2007-09) and was named the 2008 Lee Tressel Ohio College Coach of the Year by the Northeast Ohio Chapter of the National Football Foundation.
Debeljak’s Spartans also excel in the classroom, annually ranking amongst the nation’s leaders in team GPA. During his time, 17 Spartans have earned Capital One Academic All-America® honors while three have been named a semifinalist for the Draddy Trophy (commonly referred to as the Academic Heisman).
A graduate of nearby Mentor High School, Debeljak served as CWRU's head coach/offensive coordinator for three seasons before being named head coach. Highlighting his three years as the offensive coordinator, Case Western Reserve ranked first in all of NCAA Division III in passing offense and second in total offense in 2002.
Prior to coming to Case Western Reserve, Debeljak spent 12 years as an assistant (1988-00) at his alma mater, John Carroll University. At JCU, he was a graduate assistant during his first two seasons, before working eight years as the quarterbacks and receivers coach. Before his final season at John Carroll, he was promoted to offensive coordinator.
|* - UAA Champions
+ - PAC Champions
# - NCAA Playoffs 2nd Round
^ - NCAA Playoffs 1st Round
Debeljak was a member of the staff that produced NFL Pro Bowl linebacker London Fletcher, and he was the position coach for former Denver Broncos Head Coach and current New England Patriots Offensive Coordinator Josh McDaniels, Indianapolis Colts Personnel Director Tom Telesco, and former pros Tom Arth (Colts, Packers, Toronto [CFL]) and Larry Wanke (Giants).
Debeljak earned both his bachelor’s (1988) and master’s (1995) degrees from John Carroll, and he played basketball and football for the Blue Streaks. On the gridiron, he lettered four times, once as a defensive back (earning second-team all-league honors), twice as a quarterback and once as a receiver. As a basketball player, he helped the Blue Streaks to a pair of Presidents' Athletic Conference titles and held the school record for assists in a single game with 13.
Debeljak and his wife, Kelly, reside in Beachwood. Their two daughters, Ashley '13 and Allison '15, were both women's soccer student-athletes at Case Western Reserve.
- 119-47 (.717) overall record
- 38-game regular season win streak (2006-10)
- 2008 Lee Tressel Ohio College Coach of the Year
- Three-time Liberty Mutual National Coach of the Year finalist (2007, '08, '09)
- Two-time PAC Coach of the Year (2017 & 2019)
- Seven-time UAA Coaching Staff of the Year (2004, '07, '08, '09, '11, '16, '17)
- Two-time PAC Champions (2017 & 2019)
- Six UAA Championships (2007-09, '11, '16, '17)
- NCAA Playoffs (2007-09, 2017, 2019)
- Three finalists for Gagliardi Trophy (DIII Player of the Year)
- 17 Capital One Academic All-Americans®
- Three semifinalists for Draddy Trophy (Academic Heisman)
Last updated March 2020