Pete Kuharchek

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Pete Kuharchek
Sport(s) Football
Biographical details
Born (1947-11-12) November 12, 1947 (age 69)
Johnstown, Pennsylvania
Alma mater University of Tampa
Playing career
1965–1966 George Washington
1967–1968 Tampa
Position(s) Linebacker
Coaching career (HC unless noted)
1969 Tampa (assistant)
1972–1975 Tampa Catholic HS (DC)
1976 Kentucky (GA)
1977–1978 Wisconsin–Eau Claire (DC)
1979–1980 Holy Cross (DB)
1981–1982 East Tennessee State (DC)
1983–1985 Tampa Bay Bandits (AC)
1986 Memphis (LB)
1987–1989 Memphis (DC)
1990 BC Lions (LB)
1991 UTEP (LB)
1992 Orlando Thunder (DB)
1993 UTEP (DB)
1994–1995 UTEP (DC)
1996–2000 Rhein Fire (DC/LB)
Rhein Fire
2006 Tampa Bay Storm (QC)
Louisiana Tech (ILB)
2011 Tampa Bay Storm (DL)
2012 Toronto Argonauts (DC)
? Omaha Nighthawks (DB)
? Omaha Nighthawks (DC)
Head coaching record
Overall 24–28 (NFLEL)
Bowls 0–2
Accomplishments and honors
Tampa Athletic Hall of Fame (2002)

Peter C. Kuharchek (born November 12, 1947) is a former American football player and coach, whose coaching career spanned over 40 years at the high school, collegiate and professional levels. He was the head coach for the Rhein Fire of the NFL Europe League (NFLEL) from 2001 to 2005, compiling a record of 24 wins and 28 losses. At the collegiate level, he most notably served as defensive coordinator at the University of Memphis from 1987 to 1989, and the University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP) from 1994 through 1995. Besides his tenure in the NFLEL — which also included stints as assistant for the Orlando Thunder (1992) and Rhein Fire (1996–2000) — Kuharchek worked in four other professional leagues — including the United States Football League (USFL), Canadian Football League (CFL), Arena Football League (AFL), and United Football League (UFL). Most notably, he was the defensive coordinator for the CFL's Toronto Argonauts in 2009.

Playing career[edit]

A native of Johnstown, Pennsylvania, Kuharchek attended Conemaugh Township High School in Davidsville, Pennsylvania, where he lettered in football, track, and wrestling. Following graduation, he originally enrolled at George Washington University, located in Washington, D.C. Kuharchek played two seasons as a linebacker for the Colonials under head coach Jim Camp. In late November 1966, he was part of the team which played the final game in George Washington football history, a 16–7 loss to Villanova. The school's board of trustees voted to end the football program in January 1967 and Kuharchek transferred to the University of Tampa in Florida. The Pennsylvania native started two seasons at linebacker for the Spartans, which at the time were coached by Fran Curci. He led the team in tackles both of these years.[1] In 1969, Kuharchek graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in business administration and subsequently joined the Spartans coaching staff, helping to coach the team's linebackers for one season. He was elected to the University of Tampa Athletic Hall of Fame in 2002.[2]

Coaching career[edit]

Following a two-year hiatus from football, Kuharchek became an assistant coach at Tampa Catholic High School in 1972, spending the next four years as defensive coordinator at the institute. In 1976, his former college coach Fran Curci, then the head coach at the University of Kentucky, invited him to join his coaching staff as a graduate assistant coach. After only one season with the Wildcats, Kuharchek moved on to the University of Wisconsin–Eau Claire, serving as the Blugolds' defensive coordinator for two years. In 1979, he became the secondary coach at the College of the Holy Cross, located in Worcester, Massachusetts. Kuharchek spend two years on the Crusaders staff before being hired at East Tennessee State University in Johnson City as the Buccaneers defensive coordinator.[3]

In 1983, he entered the professional coaching ranks when he was hired as an assistant coach by the Tampa Bay Bandits of the fledgling United States Football League (USFL). The franchise was coached by former Heisman Trophy winner Steve Spurrier and finished each season of its three-year existence with a winning record. Kuharchek oversaw the team's strength and conditioning program and helped coaching the linebackers.[1] In December 1985, Charlie Bailey was named head coach at Memphis State University — now the University of Memphis.[4] Bailey was one of his coaches at the University of Tampa and both had worked together on the coaching staffs at Kentucky and Tampa Bay. Kuharchek was hired as the Tigers linebackers coach in January 1986 and elevated to the position of defensive coordinator twelve months later.[5]

On January 21, 2009, Kuharchek was named defensive coordinator of the Toronto Argonauts of the Canadian Football League.[6]

Head coaching record[edit]

Year Team Overall Conference Standing Bowl/playoffs
Rhein Fire (NFL Europe League) (2001–2005)
2001 Rhein Fire 5–5 3rd
2002 Rhein Fire 7–4 1st L World Bowl X [7]
2003 Rhein Fire 6–5 2nd L World Bowl XI [8]
2004 Rhein Fire 3–7 5th
2005 Rhein Fire 3–7 6th
Rhein Fire: 24–28
Total: 24–28


  1. ^ a b Flanagan, Mike (February 26, 1983). "The Tampa Bay Bandits". Evening Independent. St. Petersburg, Florida. Retrieved July 24, 2014. 
  2. ^ "Athletic Hall Induction First Since 1988". University of Tampa. Tampa, Florida. August 25, 2002. Retrieved July 25, 2014. 
  3. ^ "All-time assistant coaches". ETSU Football Record Book (PDF). East Tennessee State University. p. 20. Retrieved July 24, 2014. 
  4. ^ Associated Press (December 21, 1985). "Gator assistant Charlie Bailey named Memphis State coach". The Tuscaloosa News. Tuscaloosa, Alabama. Retrieved July 25, 2014. 
  5. ^ "NCAA Record" (PDF). The NCAA News. National Collegiate Athletic Association. February 5, 1986. p. 11. Retrieved July 25, 2014. 
  6. ^ Ralph, Dan (January 21, 2009). "Toronto Argonauts name Peter Kuharchek as their defensive coordinator". Winnipeg Free Press. Winnipeg, Manitoba. Retrieved July 24, 2014. 
  7. ^ Carlson, Mike (June 24, 2002). "World Bowl: Berlin's Thunder puts out Fire". The New York Times. Manhattan, New York. Retrieved July 24, 2014. 
  8. ^ Carlson, Mike (June 16, 2003). "Football: Frankfurt cruises to third title". The New York Times. Manhattan, New York. Retrieved July 24, 2014. 

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