University of Delaware

Change of direction

Coach K.C. Keeler relieved of duties; search under way for successor


5:12 p.m., Jan. 7, 2013--The University of Delaware announced today that Head Football Coach K.C. Keeler has been relieved of his duties, and the University will begin a nationwide search for a successor.

“We appreciate the efforts and accomplishments of Coach Keeler in leading the Blue Hens football program,” UD Director of Athletics and Recreation Services Eric Ziady said.  “The 86 wins and the 2003 National Championship will forever be etched in the hearts and minds of the Blue Hen faithful, and I thank Coach for his commitment to his alma mater.  

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“However, at this important time in UD Athletics, and after thorough evaluation over the past two months, I believe a change of direction is needed in Delaware football.  We must reinvigorate our program and reenergize our supporters as we lay the foundation for future success.”     

Keeler, a Blue Hens linebacker from 1978-80, was head coach at NCAA Division III Rowan University for nine seasons before being named UD head coach in 2002, replacing Harold R. “Tubby” Raymond, who retired after 36 seasons at the helm. 

In 11 seasons at UD, Keeler posted a record of 86-52 with an NCAA Division I-AA national championship in 2003. The Blue Hens were runners-up in two additional national championship appearances in 2007 and 2010.

However, the Blue Hens failed to advance to the post-season four of the last five seasons and posted a combined record of just 12-10 over the past two campaigns, missing out on an NCAA Football Championship Subdivision Tournament berth both years. Delaware lost its final four games of the recently completed 2012 season, its longest losing streak since the 1967 season.  

“On behalf of the University, I want to thank Coach Keeler for his service to our institution and we wish him the best in his future endeavors,” UD President Patrick Harker said. “I fully support Eric’s decision and I am confident that we will attract an outstanding coach to continue to write the Delaware football legacy."  

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