WRALSportsFan

O'Brien Officially Named New Wolfpack Coach

Posted December 8, 2006

North Carolina State wrapped up a quick search for a new head football coach by hiring Tom O'Brien away from conference rival Boston College on Friday

The university's Board of Trustees and Board of Governors unanimously approved O'Brien's contract late Friday, and officially announced his hire in a press release. O'Briien is expected to be introduced as the new head coach at 1 p.m. Saturday.

Sources told WRAL that the Boston College coach was given a 7-year deal that will pay him a base salary of $240,000 and a total of $1.1 million a year.

Wolfpack Athletic Director Lee Fowler did not immediately return a call to his office Thursday. Boston College officials did not return multiple calls seeking comment. A BC spokesman issued a statement Thursday acknowledging the reports.

"As you are no doubt aware, reports surfaced out of North Carolina yesterday afternoon and evening that N.C. State had (or would) offer Tom O'Brien its vacant head football coaching position," spokesman Chris Cameron said in an e-mail.

"If and when N.C. State makes an announcement involving Coach O'Brien, Boston College will respond accordingly. Meanwhile, Boston College has no comment on the situation."

Several broadcasters and Web sites, citing unidentified sources, reported Wednesday night that N.C. State had hired O'Brien to replace the fired Chuck Amato. San Diego Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers -- a four-year starter who left N.C. State as the school's career passing leader -- told a newspaper Wednesday that O'Brien was the choice.

"I got a call this morning, and they said it was a done deal," Rivers told the North County Times in Escondido, Calif.

O'Brien led the Eagles to a 9-3 record and an appearance in the Meineke Bowl against Navy later this month. He dismissed rumors linking him to other coaching openings in a statement this week and told the Boston Globe, when reached at home Wednesday night, that he had received no official offer.

"Any announcement has to come out of North Carolina," he said.

N.C. State fired Amato -- a former Wolfpack linebacker -- the day after his team closed the season with seven straight losses to finish 3-9. Amato was 49-37 and led the Wolfpack to five bowl games in seven seasons, but he went 25-31 in the Atlantic Coast Conference and never finished higher than fourth.


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