NORTH CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) — Albany State coach Gabe Giardina is returning to take over as Charleston Southern coach.
The school announced Giardina's hiring on Wednesday. He most recently spent five-plus seasons with Division II Albany State, where he went 37-17 and won the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference title in 2021.
This will be Giardina's third stint with Charleston Southern. He spent four seasons as running backs coach and special teams coordinator from 2008-11, then came back to school as offensive coordinator for coach Jamey Chadwell from 2013-16.
Giardina thanked university and athletic department administrators “for making our dream a reality,” he said in a statement. “I am honored to be the head coach at a place that has meant so much to us in the past.”
Giardina takes over for Autry Denson, the former Notre Dame running back and assistant coach who was dismissed after going 14-22 in four seasons with the Buccaneers.
Giardina served four seasons in charge of Charleston Southern's offense where the team twice reached the NCAA FCS playoffs and won the Big South Conference title in 2016.
Giardina played for three years at Alabama, where he served as a graduate assistant coach under Mike Shula and Nick Saban.