John Strollo, who spent the 2012 and 2013 seasons as an assistant coach at Penn State after coaching the offensive line for Ball State in 2011, has been named the Cardinals’ offensive line coach, according to fourth-year head coach Pete Lembo.
"John is an outstanding person and a tremendous offensive line coach,” Lembo says. “We are very fortunate to have him back. John has been and will continue to be a wonderful representative of our football program and this university. A significant part of our offense, both philosophically and technically, has been painted by John's brush since 2008. I could not be happier for our players and staff that this has come to fruition."
In the 2011 season, Strollo tutored an offensive line at Ball State that allowed only 11 sacks and tied for 12th in the nation for fewest sacks allowed. His offensive line unit protected quarterback Keith Wenning, who threw for 2,786 yards – the third most in a single season in Ball State history – and set the single-season record with 287 completions. Strollo’s offensive line was also instrumental in blocking for then true freshman running back Jahwan Edwards’ 786 rushing yards and 11 touchdowns.
Strollo, who coached the tight ends at Penn State, was instrumental in the development of a tight ends unit that led the nation with 83 receptions in 2012. In 2013, he coached Adam Breneman to True Freshman All-America Second Team honors by 247Sports after a season with 15 catches for 186 yards and three touchdowns. He helped the Nittany Lions lead the Big Ten in total offense (437.0 ypg) and rank second in scoring (32.6 ppg) in conference games in 2012. Strollo tutored Kyle Carter, who was a consensus first-team Freshman All-American and a first-team All-Big Ten honoree, while true freshman Jesse James was an honorable-mention Freshman All-American and tied the school season record for a tight end with five touchdown receptions.
Strollo coached the offensive line under Lembo at Ball State in 2011 and at Elon in 2009 and 2010 after coaching the tight ends for the Phoenix in 2008. The 2014 season will be the 34th year for Strollo as a football coach in a career that started at Middletown South (N.J.) High School from 1977-79. Strollo served as an assistant coach at various institutions, including the offensive coordinator position at Cornell and Northeastern.
Strollo coached Duke tight end Ben Patrick, Cornell offensive lineman Kevin Boothe and Lafayette offensive lineman Jim Goff, all of whom played in the National Football League.
A 1976 graduate of Boston College with a master’s degree from Springfield in 1986, Strollo is married to the former Janet Kowalski and the couple has two daughters – Katie and Emily – both graduates of Syracuse.