Former Flames standout Manny Rojas has been added to the Liberty football coaching staff.
The newest addition to the Flames coaching staff has been around the program since he left the gridiron for Liberty following the 2006 season, as head coach Danny Rocco has announced that Manny Rojas has been added to his staff. After concluding a stellar four-year career for the Flames, Rojas remained close to the program, working within the Athletics Department as a member of the strength and conditioning staff. Rojas has joined the full-time coaching staff this summer and will serve as a defensive assistant and special team assistant when the Flames take the field in 2010. Rojas was a dominating force for the Flames on the field, finishing his career with 348 stops. As a senior, Rojas led the squad with 102 tackles, making him one of only three defenders during the last 11 seasons to crack the 100-tackle mark in a year. A two-time Big South all-conference performer, Rojas still currently ranks No. 3 in the conference record books for career tackles, No. 3 in assisted stops (208), No. 3 in forced fumbles (7) and No. 8 in solo tackles (140). Rojas' senior season marked a dramatic change in the culture that surrounded Liberty football, as the 2006 campaign was the Flames first under current head coach Danny Rocco. After finishing the prior season with a 1-10 record, Rojas played a key role, both statistically and as an emotional team captain, helping the squad post a 6-5 record. The five-win improvement over the previous season marked the best turnaround in all of NCAA FCS football for the 2006 season. A large part of Liberty's five-win improvement was due in part to the Flames defensive efforts. In 2006, Liberty set a new program standard by allowing just 172 total points and the Flames finished the year ranked No. 12 in scoring defense (15.6 points per game). Along with the new program record for points allowed, Liberty set seven other defensive records in 2006, including a new standard for shutouts, as Liberty blanked three opponents. The Flames also knocked off No. 24 Charleston Southern, 34-20, in their season finale, marking the first Top 25 program Liberty had defeated in a decade. Rojas came to Liberty following a standout career at West Allegheny High School in Imperial, Pa. He was a three-year starter for the Indians, where he earned first-team all-conference and all-state honors. As a senior, he helped lead West Allegheny High School to the AAA state championship and was a member of the Pennsylvania Big 33 squad who defeated Ohio in July of 2002. He was also named to the "Fabulous 22" Pittsburgh Post Gazette squad and the Metro Index Scouting Service Top 50 of Western Pennsylvania. The native of Oakdale, Pa., graduated from Liberty in 2007 with a bachelor of science degree in communication studies with an advertising and public relations concentration.
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