A stunner for University of New Hampshire football. Longtime head coach Sean McDonnell is taking an indefinite leave of absence for health-related reasons.

Associate head coach and former UNH quarterback Ricky Santos takes over the reigns effective immediately.

"Our entire department is aligned in doing everything to support Sean with the intent of getting him back to coaching his program," said Director of Athletics Marty Scarano. "This will be the ultimate team effort; the administration, coaching staff, and most of all the student-athletes will give everything we have to support Jenny and Sean during this challenge. - UNH Press Release

The Wildcats open their season next Saturday, September 7th at Holy Cross.

The 62-year-old McDonnell is in his 21st season at UNH. He is a two-time National Coach of the Year winner. The Wildcats went to the NCAA playoffs 14 straight years, from 2004 to 2017. The streak ended last season. McDonnell's record is 154-95.

NOTE: UMaine plays UNH on November 23rd, the final game of the regular season.