The Student Voice of Coastal Carolina University



The Moglia legacy: Inspiring leadership on and off the field

Former Coastal Carolina University football head coach Joe Moglia is set to have a movie made based on his book, “4th and Goal: One Man’s Quest to Recapture His Dream” by Monte Burke. 


According to Moglia, this project has since been postponed due to the writers and actors strike from its initial announcement about a year ago.  


“I know the writer and director wants it to happen, so I believe it’s gonna happen,” Moglia said. “We’re starting all over again.” 


He said he is looking forward to it, and is grateful to those who have been there for him along the way. If the movie comes to fruitition, Moglia said it would be out by 2025. 


“I know I had a significant impact on others, and for that to actually to turn into a movie, and if that’s well done that will be a very inspirational movie should it happen, Moglia said, “oh, that’s something I couldn’t be prouder of.” 


Amidst the excitement surrounding his highly anticipated movie, Moglia recounts how got to where he is today.  


Moglia aspired to play college baseball and football in his early years, but this was quickly derailed when he found out his girlfriend was pregnant. He decided to support himself and his family instead, while attending Fordham University. 


While Moglia was at Fordham, a new football coach offered him a position coaching a high school football team, which he was able to do from his sophomore to senior year of college. At just 19 years old, he was the youngest football coach they had.  


 “I knew I had a real impact on the kids I was coaching,” he said. 


Later on into thirteen years of coaching, he became a defensive coordinator at Dartmouth University. During this time, he was offered the position of defensive coordinator at Univeristy of Miami in 1984, which he ended up rejecting with his family’s best interest in mind. 


“I didn’t think I could look myself in the mirror and feel okay about myself If didn’t live up to that responsibility,” he said.  


After he rejected this position at UMiami, he made a career change and went to Wall Street. Here, he went to work on the institutional side, where he was eventually offered an MBA spot at Merrill Lynch Wealth Management. Out of the 26 other MBA students, he was the only one who was a football coach. He ended up being extremely successful at Merrill Lynch, and even went on to have a senior position.  


Before his debut at Coastal Carolina University, Moglia was offered alternate coaching gigs at Yale University and others, but ultimately, he decided to take the offer as Coastal Carolina’s head coach knowing the team was struggling at the time. 


During his first three years as their head coach, he was an Eddie Robinson Coach of the Year finalist. In 2014, he was a runner-up for the title, and finally in 2015, he won the Eddie Robinson award. In that time span, Coastal was closely ranked No. 1 in 2014 and 2015 for eight weeks consecutively. 


In the 2016 season, he managed to pull out a 10-2 record in his first year of Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS). 


From 2012 through 2016, him and his team qualified and won four straight conference championships. On top of this accomplishment, his first five seasons he qualified for NCAA football championship playoffs.  


“The impact I had on guys, we went from one of the worst teams in the nation ranked, to every year we became nationally ranked at the [Football Championship Subdivision] level,” he said. 


Before stepping down as CCU’s head coach in 2019, Moglia was inducted into the Lombardi Hall of Fame, ensuring he would go out on top. 


However, Moglia said he does not want people to remember him for his experiences or his success, but rather what he stands for.  


“It’s standing on your own two feet, take responsibility for yourself and treat others with respect,” he said. 

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