University officials confirmed Wednesday afternoon that former 14-year NFL veteran, ESPN analyst, high school coach, and Super Bowl-winning quarterback Trent Dilfer would become the program’s seventh head coach.
The UAB Athletic department held an introductory press conference Wednesday evening to announce the decision.
Dilfer, who will debut as a college coach for the Blazers in their first year in the American Athletic Conference (AAC), has spent the last four years as the head coach of Lipscomb Academy in Nashville, Tennessee.
Dilfer amassed a record of 43-10 in his four seasons at the helm and coached his team to a state championship berth after going 12-0 during the 2022 slate.
Reports of Dilfer’s hiring stormed the internet Tuesday night, with Steve Irvine of 1819 news being the first to break the news.
College football writers from across the country would confirm Irvine’s reports late last night, causing an uproar from UAB fans and critics alike.
The report of Dilfer’s hire comes to the dismay of the UAB football team, who spent the past several weeks voicing their opinions concerning the retention of current interim coach Bryant Vincent. Vincent led the Blazers to a 6-6 record in the 2022 campaign after Bill Clark retired in June.
Several players, including offensive linemen Kadeem Tellfort, Matthew Trehern, Will Rykard, and defensive lineman Fish McWilliams, were at the forefront of the charge calling for Bryant Vincent to be the permanent head coach of the Blazers.
The players came together to write a letter to University President Ray Watts showing their support for Vincent, demanding their opinions at least be considered in hiring the program’s next coach.
With the growing popularity of the transfer portal in college football, expect many disgruntled UAB football players to hit the portal in search of new opportunities.
For now, Blazer fans will have to wait and see what the Dilfer hire will mean for the program as they transition to the AAC in 2023.