Head coach Bill Clark released this written statement:“We are aware of the study but disappointed with the decision to discontinue the sport of football at UAB, particularly because of its effect on the lives of the student-athletes and coaches that have worked so hard to restore the quality of the program. We don't fully understand the decision, nor agree with it, but do respect it and the authority of the UAB Administration to make it.As a conference, we will move forward in our pursuit of excellence in athletics and academics, with the primary goal of providing a positive educational experience for all of our 5,000 student-athletes. Our universities have invested in athletics, and in facilities to support athletics, and are focused on their student-athletes and the contribution college athletics makes on their campuses and in their communities.UAB has been a contributing member to the Conference since its inception and has expressed a strong interest in remaining a member, a topic that the Conference's Board of Directors will take up in the months ahead. The Conference's current bylaws require all members to sponsor football.”
"This is one of the most difficult days that I have had to endure in my personal as well as my coaching career.I am absolutely heartbroken for my players and my assistant coaches. These coaches and players have done a tremendous job and have worked extremely hard for this university, to achieve six wins and be bowl eligible.I want to pay a special tribute to our many loyal fans for all the support hey have given us this season and especially, during these last few challenging weeks.Sometimes we as people do not understand why certain things happen; however my faith tells me that God has a plan for the lives of our players, my coaching staff, and for me and my family.I am grateful for the opportunity I have had here at UAB and making so many new relationships during my time here.There is no doubt in my mind that we were in the process of building something special at UAB. This goes further than our football program, the athletics department, or the university as a whole. This team is Birmingham - we represent Birmingham and this community.It is unfortunate that it has come to this. But again, it is a decision that has been reached and I must respect it and will move forward.Thank you Birmingham and the UAB Community for everything you have done for our players, this coaching staff and me personally."
Statement from Karen Brooks, president pro tem of the Board of Trustees of The University of Alabama System:"This is a tragic day in UAB history. The negative repercussions of this day will be felt on the UAB campus and in the Birmingham community for generations to come.Today's announcement to kill UAB football also marks the death of the visionary leadership of great men such as Dick Hill, Jerry Young and Scotty McCallum. Gone is the charismatic can-do leadership of Gene Bartow, the father of UAB athletics. The man who understood the future of all UAB sports is tied to the success of its football program.The battles fought by Dr. Ann Reynolds and Dr. Carol Garrison make today's announcement no surprise. These two iron-willed women never succumbed to the unrelenting pressure the University of Alabama System Board of Trustees brought down on them to destroy UAB athletics. Those battles and the pressure sustained over the years makes our current lack of leadership regrettable, but understandable.I am filled with both surprise and gratitude at how the Birmingham community, too long defined by our inability to work together, joined together to try and save the football program. We crossed political, municipal, social, and ethnic lines fighting together for something that is good for our entire community. Unfortunately, the leadership at UAB chose to turn its back and shrink back in the face of adversity. I am hopeful that one day, under the right leadership, these breaches of trust and confidence can be healed.Today is a sad day - but for those of us who love UAB - we cannot quit. We must be even more vigilant because today's surrender has signaled to the Board that they can strip away from this campus whatever they desire. Others must stand and fight before this great university is reduced to only a medical school and an extension center. Our community must not lose sight of UAB's potential greatness - even if those at its helm seem to lose heart."
"I fully support President Watts on an incredibly difficult decision that has come out of a long and painstaking process. For UAB to sharpen its competitive edge in teaching, research and service, Dr. Watts and his team are setting out strategic priorities that will produce the very best returns for UAB's students, faculty, staff and the citizens of Alabama. As is the case throughout The University of Alabama System, decisions like these are a reality of the financial challenges we must continue to address on a daily basis. I am confident that UAB will reach its goal of achieving sustainable excellence as the strategic plan moves forward, and I will do everything in my power to assist in that effort."Statement from Dr. Robert Witt, Chancellor of The University of Alabama System:
"I strongly support President Watts' decision to drop football, bowling and rifle from UAB's intercollegiate athletics program. His decision is a strategic and financial necessity. UAB must focus its financial investments on the University's key strategic priorities."
“This season of UAB football has been one of the best for Blazer football, and I congratulate Coach Clarke and his team of coaches, staff and, most importantly, players who have dedicated themselves to UAB. As a graduate of the University of Alabama School of Medicine, I am proud of the impact UAB has on the City of Birmingham and the State of Alabama. The decision to end the football program at UAB is President Watts' decision, and I respect his authority as UAB President. He has a strong vision for the future of UAB, and I look forward to the great things that await the University in research, academics and athletics.”