Wednesday, December 10, 2003

Former UNH Football Star O'Leary New Head Coach at UCF

I'm being facious about the UNH part, this happened on Monday but seemed to have been totally overshadowed by the BCS mess. UCF is getting a great coach, one that Notre Dame had for about a week.

From the University of Central Florida Athletic Site:

George O’Leary, the two-time ACC Coach of the Year and 2000 National Coach of the Year, was named UCF’s new football coach Monday by athletics director Steve Orsini.

The former Georgia Tech head coach and current Minnesota Vikings defensive coordinator, O’Leary, 57, signed a five-year and becomes the eighth coach in the school’s 25-year history. He replaces Alan Gooch who coached the team on an interim basis the final two games of 2003 after Mike Kruczek was relieved of his coaching duties Nov. 10.

“After searching the nation I identified my number one candidate and we got him,” Orsini said. “He is the best person for this job. He has a proven track record of building an entire football program to a championship level.”

O’Leary, will continue to fulfill his commitment to the NFC North-leading Minnesota Vikings in the upcoming weeks while preparing to turn his full attention to the UCF job.

“I see the University of Central Florida as a sleeping giant,” O’Leary said. “I think this is a great opportunity and the potential is outstanding. I was greatly impressed with the people I spoke to about this job and the commitment to not only athletics, but to the students and graduation.”

O'Leary was the head coach at Georgia Tech from 1994-2001 and compiled a 52-33 record while leading the Yellow Jackets to Bowl appearances the last five seasons. He was named the winner of the 2000 Bobby Dodd Award as the National Coach of the Year and was named the ACC’s top coach in 1998 and 2000. Over his final four seasons in Atlanta he led the team to a 34-14 record (.708), including two runner-up finishes and a tie for the ACC title in 1998.