Al Golden (RBC ’87) was a standout football player during the two years he played tight end for Red Bank Catholic. Having developed a reputation for his spirited play, head for the game and dominance on field, Al was recruited by colleges nationally. He accepted a full scholarship to Penn State where he was a two-year starter at tight end. He played in four bowl games during his collegiate career, and as a junior played a key role in Penn State’s 1990 nationally-televised upset of number one ranked Notre Dame with his touchdown reception late in the fourth quarter. He served as captain of the team his senior year when Penn State defeated Tennessee in the 1992 Fiesta Bowl. Following that victory, Penn State was ranked third in the nation in the final AP poll. Al was the recipient of the 1991 Ridge Riley Award, given each year to a Penn State player for excellence in scholarship, sportsmanship, friendship and leadership.
Upon graduation, Al signed with the New England Patriots and played briefly on special teams before shifting his career to coaching. He returned to RBC to be offensive coordinator for his high school head coach, Lou Montanaro for one season. Then in 1994 he went on to serve as graduate assistant under George Welsh at the University of Virginia until 1996. At UVA, Al worked primarily with the linebackers and special teams, and also earned his master’s degree in Sports Psychology. When Tom O’Brien left UVA to take over the head coach position at Boston College in 1997, he asked Al to join him on his staff. At BC Al coached the linebackers for three seasons until, at the age of 32, he returned to UVA to become the youngest defensive coordinator in Division 1-A. He was inducted into the Jersey Shore Sports Hall of Fame in 2004.
In 2006 Al received his first head coaching job with Temple University. By the end of the 2009 season he had turned around a team that had been booted out of the Big East for non-competitiveness to earn a 9-3 record and won the Maxwell Tri-State Coach of the Year Award. In 2010 Al was hired by the University of Miami and by 2013 the Hurricanes earned Top 10 ranking.
After 23 years as a college coach, Al joined the Detroit Lions coaching staff as a tight end coach and enters the 2018 season as the team’s linebacker coach. He will be inducted into the RBC Athletic Hall of Fame at a ceremony on June 23rd in the RBC Vincent J. Eck Student Center. Click HERE for tickets and complete event details.