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Trainer returns to coach Rhode Island

Kingston, RI (Sports Network) - Just two months after leaving Rhode Island to join the staff at Bowling Green, Joe Trainer has returned as the Rams' 19th head coach.

Rhode Island needed a replacement for Darren Rizzi, who stepped down on Sunday after a one-year stint to take an assistant coaching position with the NFL's Miami Dolphins.

Trainer spent one season on Rizzi's staff as the associate head coach and defensive coordinator, but left in December to join Dave Clawson's new staff at Bowling Green. Clawson had served as offensive coordinator and Trainer was a defensive assistant for Andy Talley's Villanova staff in the late 1990s.

Trainer spent three seasons at Villanova as a linebackers coach before being promoted to defensive coordinator in 2000. While he was a member of Talley's staff, the Wildcats won two conference championships, made two playoff appearances and advanced to the 2002 national semifinals.

Villanova's 1997 team was ranked No. 1 during the regular season in the Sports Network poll and the Wildcats led the Atlantic-10 in defense in 2003 and 2004 under Trainer. Trainer left Villanova in 2005 to become the head coach at Millersville, where he remained for three years before moving to Rhode Island.

A graduate of Dickinson in 1990, Trainer started his coaching career as a graduate assistant and linebackers coach at Temple from 1990-91 before moving to Frostburg State (1992), Colgate (193-94) and New Haven (1995-96).

Trainer takes over a Rhode Island program that has now had three head coaches in three years and has managed just one winning seasons in the past 13 years.

02/27 14:48:47 ET