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TUESDAY, DECEMBER 5, 2006
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College Football Notebook

Alabama

NEW YORK — Bart Starr coached the Green Bay Packers from 1975-83 and went 52-76-3. The 72-year-old Hall of Famer played for Alabama but isn’t interested in the job opening. Mike Shula was fired last week.

“No, I didn’t do well in that field,” Starr said with a chuckle. “I’m hopeful they’ll get a good coach. It’s a school with a proud and rich history in football.”

Starr is co-founder of Rawhide Boys Ranch, a 500-acre campus in Wisconsin that offers training for at-risk youth. He and wife Cherry were in New York to promote Secure Horizons, which helps seniors understand health insurance choices through UnitedHealth Group.

Stanford

STANFORD, Calif. — Stanford opened the football season full of optimism based on a renovated stadium, an offense that returned nearly intact and progress that was made in Walt Harris’ first year as head coach.

That quickly ended when the stadium was often half-empty, the skill players went down with injuries and the Cardinal finished with their worst record in more than four decades.

All of that played into the decision Monday to fire Harris after his second season and begin the search for a new coach who can win under the difficult circumstances at Stanford.

“This has been a tough year,” athletic director Bob Bowlsby said. “In some measure this decision was not made as a result of being 1-11 as much as it was a result of not seeing the progress in some of the critical areas we would have hoped for after two years.”

Harris finished his two-year stint with a 6-17 record after losing 26-17 in the Big Game to California on Saturday. He had the shortest tenure of any Stanford coach since Rod Dowhower left after one season in 1979 with a 5-5-1 record.

The Cardinal finished with the most losses in school history and the worst record since an 0-10 mark in 1960.

Central Michigan

MOUNT PLEASANT, Mich. — Central Michigan appointed Jeff Quinn interim football coach Monday, one day after Brian Kelly accepted the head coaching job at Cincinnati.

Quinn has been associate head coach and offensive line coach for the Chippewas the past three seasons and was offensive coordinator this year.

Central Michigan went 9-4 this season and will play Middle Tennessee State in the Motor City Bowl on Dec. 26, its first bowl appearance since 1994.

Before coming to Central Michigan, Quinn coached 15 seasons at Grand Valley State, the last 13 as an assistant to Kelly.

Kelly accepted the Cincinnati job days after leading Central Michigan to the Mid-American Conference championship. He replaces Mark Dantonio, who left to coach at Michigan State after three seasons with the Bearcats.

North Alabama

FLORENCE — For the second time in four years, North Alabama head football coach Mark Hudspeth has been selected NCAA Division II Region 2 coach of the year by the American Football Coaches Association.

Hudspeth, in his fifth season as head coach at North Alabama, led the Lions to an 11-1 record that included a Gulf South Conference championship and a berth in the Division II playoffs for the third time in the last four years.

The Associated Press

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