Grounds For Success
With University of Toledo Football Coach Jason Candle
Join EPIC Toledo and we welcome Coach Candle and learn more about his career and role at the University of Toledo.
At the heart of the past decade of success of the Toledo Football program has been one man — Head Coach Jason Candle.
Candle has played a major role in the consistent excellence of the Rockets over the past 10 years, first as an assistant coach from 2009-15, and then as head coach for the past three seasons. He assumed the head coaching role in December of 2015 following a highly successful seven-year stint as a position coach and offensive coordinator. He has since embarked on a quest that has taken an already outstanding program to even greater heights.
In three seasons as Toledo’s head coach, Candle’s record is 28-13. The Rockets have earned a berth into a bowl game in each of those years, most recently the Makers Wanted Bahamas Bowl in 2018. In addition, a record six Rockets have been selected in the NFL Draft since 2017, and Toledo has had the No. 1 recruiting class in the MAC in each of the past three years.
In 2017, his Rockets achieved an 11-3 record and won the Mid-American Conference Championship with a 45-28 victory over Akron in the MAC title game. Candle was named MAC Coach of the Year, leading the Rockets to their first outright MAC West Division crown since 1998 and first league championship since 2004.
Prior to assuming the helm of the Midnight Blue and Gold, Candle had been serving as the program’s associate head coach/offensive coordinator. In that time, Toledo went 56-31, won three MAC West Division co-championships and appeared in four bowl games.
Candle moved into the corner office on Dec. 2, 2015, when Athletic Director Mike O’Brien chose him to become the 27th head football coach in the storied history of Toledo football.
Following his introductory news conference, Candle had less than three weeks to put together a coaching staff and prepare his team for the Marmot Boca Raton Bowl. Twenty days later, Candle and the Rockets celebrated a 32-17 victory over No. 24 Temple in the rain of south Florida. The triumph capped a 10-2 season for the Rockets and gave Candle a head coaching debut to remember.
In his first full season as Toledo’s leader in 2016, Candle led the Rockets to a 9-4 season and a berth in the Raycom Media Camellia Bowl. Candle’s second season was even better as the Rockets followed up with the 2017 MAC Championship title. The Rockets’ trip to the 2018 Makers Wanted Bahamas Bowl was their fourth straight post-season trip with Candle as the head coach and eighth in the last nine years.