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UTSA introduces Larry Coker as head football coach

Courtesy: UTSA Athletics Communications
Release: 10/29/2009
Courtesy UTSA Athletics Communications
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Larry Coker was introduced as the first head football coach in UTSA history on Friday morning.
SAN ANTONIO — With several hundred students, faculty, staff and friends of UTSA in attendance, the Roadrunners formally introduced Larry Coker as the first head football coach in school history on Friday morning. Coker was selected from a field of three finalists to build an NCAA Division I Football Championship Subdivision (FCS/formerly Division I-AA) program from the ground up.  

“This is an exciting time for athletics at UTSA and we had a great group of finalists,” UTSA President Dr. Ricardo Romo said. “We are exceptionally pleased that Larry Coker has accepted our offer to organize and lead the first Roadrunner football program and all of us look forward to starting a new tradition at UTSA.”

"We are extremely thrilled to announce Larry Coker as our first head coach," Athletics Director Lynn Hickey said. "To bring in somebody of his caliber and with his resume to start up our program is a wonderful thing for the University and San Antonio."

Coker, who has been a college football analyst for ESPN the past two years, is the former head coach at the University of Miami (Fla.), where he compiled a 60-15 record (.800 winning percentage), led the Hurricanes to the 2001 National Championship and won three Big East Championships in six seasons.

A 28-year coaching veteran at the collegiate level and two-time National Coach of the Year, Coker has served on staffs at five different schools. He was the offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach at Miami from 1995-2000. Prior to his tenure in Coral Gables, he spent three seasons at Ohio State, where he was the quarterbacks coach in 1995 and the defensive backs coach from 1993-94. Coker spent two seasons as the offensive coordinator at Oklahoma in 1990-92 and also served in the same capacity at Oklahoma State from 1983-89 and Tulsa in 1980-82. He began his collegiate coaching career at Tulsa as the offensive backfield coach in 1979.

A native of Okemah, Okla., Coker was a three-year letterwinner at Northeastern (Okla.) State University, where he received his bachelor’s degree in history in 1970 and a master’s in guidance counseling and physical education in 1973.

He and his wife, Dianna, have a daughter, Lara, and two grandchildren, twins Daniel and Dillon Goldmann.

The University of Texas System Board of Regents unanimously approved UTSA’s Athletics Initiative Business Plan on Dec. 18, which granted the university permission to add a football program. The plan calls for the development of an $84 million competitive athletics complex and addition of an NCAA FCS football program with the intent to advance football and the athletics department’s existing 16 intercollegiate programs to an NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS/formerly Division I-A) conference.

The initiative directly supports the university’s academic mission as outlined in its strategic plan, "A Shared Vision UTSA 2016."

The University of Texas at San Antonio is one of the fastest growing higher-education institutions in the state of Texas and the second-largest of nine academic universities and six health institutions in the UT System. As a multicultural institution of access and excellence, UTSA aims to be a premier public research university providing access to educational excellence and preparing citizen leaders for the global environment.

UTSA serves more than 28,400 students in 64 bachelor’s, 47 master’s and 21 doctoral degree programs in the colleges of Architecture, Business, Education and Human Development, Engineering, Honors, Liberal and Fine Arts, Public Policy, Sciences and Graduate School. Founded in 1969, UTSA is an intellectual and creative resource center and a socioeconomic development catalyst for Texas and beyond.

UTSA is a member of the Southland Conference and it captured the 2007-08 Commissioner’s Cup for the best overall athletics program.

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