Coach Jim Salgado


Jim Salgado made his debut as Princeton's co-defensive coordinator a smashing success during the 2013 season. He helped engineer one of the league's top defenses and guided Princeton to its first Ivy League championship since 2006.

Salgado, who also coaches the defensive backfield, helped put eight Princeton defensive players on the All-Ivy League team that season. Three (Anthony Gaffney, Phillip Bhaya and Matt Arends) were starters in his defensive backfield; the fourth starter in the backfield, John Hill, ranked in the top four in the Ivy League in both interceptions and passes defensed.

Under Salgado, Princeton was ranked second in the Ivy League in total defense and rushing defense, and it was third in pass defense. The Tigers had multiple All-Ivy League players at each level, including Bushnell Cup finalist and Senior Bowl invitee Caraun Reid.

Salgado's defense was known for its attacking style, which translated to 23 takeaways during the season. Princeton ranked third nationally in sacks (3.7 per game), fourth in first downs allowed and 13th in third-down conversion defense.

Last season, Salgado's defense produced both the Bushnell Cup winner for Ivy League Defensive Player of the Year (Mike Zeuli), as well as four All-Ivy honorees.

During the 2012 season, Salgado helped coach a much-improved defensive backfield that featured three new starters, including two freshmen. Gaffney earned first-team All-Ivy League honors as both a cornerback and kick returner, while Arends started the final five games of the season at cornerback.

Salgado has been in the Ivy League for six full seasons, as he first gained experience during the 2009 season when he coached linebackers at Cornell.

During his time at Princeton, Salgado has also gained experience by working three NFL internships. He worked with the Houston Texans (2010), the Cleveland Browns (2011) and the Carolina Panthers (2012).

While coaching at Syracuse, Salgado assisted in the development of NFL players Steve Gregory (San Diego Chargers), Tanard Jackson (Tampa Bay Buccaneers), Anthony Smith (Pittsburgh Steelers) and Joe Fields (Carolina Panthers). The 2006 team ranked in the top 25 nationally in turnover margin (ninth, 0.92), interceptions (15th, 17) and turnovers gained (22nd, 28). The Orange defense had 48 total interceptions in his four seasons.

Salgado served four NFL Fellowships, spending summers with the Miami Dolphins (1999), San Diego Chargers (2002), Philadelphia Eagles (2003) and St. Louis Rams (2009); he worked with the linebackers during his time with the Rams. He also participated in the NCAA's Advanced Coaching Program and Expert Coaching Program in 2004, as well as the Minority Coaches Forum in 2008.

Salgado joined the Syracuse staff in 2005 after stints as an assistant coach at Northeastern (2000-01 and 2004), Hofstra (1994, 2002-03), Millersville (1997-99) Boston University (1996-97) and Western Connecticut (1994-95). During his time on the sidelines, Salgado mentored corners, linebackers and directed special teams. At Hofstra, he was part of a defensive staff that guided the Atlantic 10-leading pass defense in both 2002 (161.9 ypg.) and 2003 (131.1 ypg.), both of which ranked in the top 20 nationally (13th and ninth, respectively). 

A 1993 graduate of Hofstra with a degree in psychology, Salgado was a three-year starter at corner. The Pride advanced to the 1990 NCAA Division III semifinals. 

Salgado and his wife, Carolyn, have three children, Jalen, Laila and Lincoln.

Gregory Gerstner
Gregory Gerstner