UAB names new head football coach

Published: Nov. 30, 2022 at 3:53 PM CST
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - The UAB Blazers’ search for a head football coach has ended.

The school announced on Wednesday the hiring of Trent Dilfer, a former Pro Bowler and Super Bowl winning quarterback, after former coach Bill Clark retired in June due to back problems.

Dilfer has spent the last four seasons as the head coach at Lipscomb Academy in Nashville. His Mustangs won the 2021 TSSAA D2-AA State Championship in 2021 and will play for another on Thursday. He will begin his role as the UAB coach following the conclusion of Thursday’s championship game.

“Having the opportunity to lead such a quality program like UAB is one that I am beyond excited about,” Dilfer said. “The investments the university has made for UAB Football aligns with my vision of taking this program to new heights as we join the American Athletic Conference and compete annually for the highest prize of playing in the College Football Playoff.”

After starting at quarterback for two and a half seasons at Fresno State, Dilfer was selected sixth overall in the 1994 NFL Draft by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. During his time in the NFL, he played for five different teams while putting up 20,518 yards and 113 touchdowns during his 14-year career. Dilfer led the Baltimore Ravens to a 34-7 win over the New York Giants in Super Bowl XXXV, as well as named to the Pro Bowl in 1997 and was the recipient of the Bart Starr Award and Ed Block Courage Award in 2003.

Dilfer is also the head coach of the Elite 11 Academy and helps train young quarterbacks, including 27 current NFL starters and 14 of the past 15 Heisman Trophy winners.

“Trent is a proven winner on and off the field at all levels and will be a tremendous leader for our program,” UAB Director of Athletics Mark Ingram said. “He is a Super Bowl-winning quarterback who played the game at its highest level for many years, and he has coached some of the top quarterbacks who are currently NFL franchise players.”

Bryant Vincent has filled in as interim head coach this season after Clark’s exit in June. The Blazers will face Miami (OH) in this Bahamas Bowl before officially joining the American Athletic Conference on July 1, 2023.

“Trent’s goals and vision for our program is to lead UAB to the College Football Playoff and we have no doubt that he is the right coach to lead our transition in the American Athletic Conference,” Ingram said. “Most importantly, Trent is an outstanding man, husband and father with tremendous character who fits our department’s core values of winning championships, graduating with honors and making a difference in our community.”

“I would like to thank President Ray Watts, Director of Athletics Mark Ingram and the entire search committee for their commitment to excellence and for trusting in me as we venture into this new era of UAB Football together,” Dilfer said.

UAB (6-6, 4-4) will face off against Miami (OH) (6-6, 4-4)

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