Inspiring “Terror”: Spotlight on Defensive Coordinator Mike Dailey

McDaniel Defensive Coordinator Mike Dailey

The Green Terror football team has a source of inspiration all their own in the form of Coach Mike Dailey.

“Coach Dailey is the kind of guy that every time you hold a conversation with him, he has your full attention and focus,” says junior Aaron Chester, who plays defensive back. “He really is a great human being and just has that knack for saying the right things in all the right times.”

Mike Dailey is the Defensive Coordinator of the Green Terror football team. A Maryland native, Dailey, the youngest of eight children, grew up on a farm, which instilled him with numerous values and disciplines. Being exposed at a young age to what he describes as a hardworking environment allowed him to ingrain such values in his players.

“Integrity and hard work pays off, and these are things that are hard to grasp when you are young,” says Dailey, “But as you get older you start to see the truth in the statement.”

Dailey first got into coaching at the high school level. From there, he worked his way up the ranks to coach at a junior college, followed by a Division I-AA. Then he began coaching at the professional level, dedicating 19 years to the Arena Football League. Dailey spent 12 of those years as a head coach, coaching both the Albany Firebirds and the Colorado Crush.

Before getting into the profession of coaching however, he was a player at the semi-pro level. Dailey admits to not being the best player on the field and knew he was not cut out to play at the professional level. He was a guy that just loved the game and enjoyed playing it.

“I wasn’t the most talkative player, or the ‘ra-ra’ guy on the team,” says Dailey. “I was the quiet type and I didn’t have the qualities that a coach looked for to be an outspoken player.”

Dailey’s role as a player was cut short when, in 1981, his life was changed dramatically by an armed robbery. During the incident, he received a gunshot wound that rendered him unable to return to the game of football, at least as a football player. Dailey refused to let this obstacle get in the way of his love for the game, so he began coaching. Even though he was the quiet type, he felt that coaching came naturally to him. It did.

As a head coach in the Arena Football League, Dailey led two different teams to championship victories. One of those teams, the 1999 Albany Firebirds, was voted the greatest team in the history of the AFL. Dailey also won the AFL Coach of the Year in 1999, and he has even been inducted into the Arena Football League Hall of Fame.

Dailey joined the McDaniel Football coaching staff in 2009. Here on the Hill, Dailey is regarded as a wise, truthful and sincere role-model by players and fellow coaches alike. He is noted for his ability to make positive situations out of negative ones. He has great communication skills and takes his experiences, mistakes, misfortunes, rights and wrongs and teaches others from them. He is seen as a very honest man who he is always going to tell his players how it is. Even if it’s something a person does not want to hear, he is not afraid to tell him, because in the end, it’s only going to benefit that person.

Dailey truly cares and is committed to his team. Though he may come off as intimidating at times, he is an inspiration to all who know him.