Report: Rick Neuheisel to join Steve Spurrier as coach in new spring pro league

Dr. Saturday

It looks like we’ll see another familiar head coach on the sidelines when the Alliance of American Football, a new professional spring league, kicks off in 2019.

Sporting News reported Monday that Rick Neuheisel, the former head coach at Colorado, Washington and UCLA, will lead the league’s Southern California-area team. If the hire comes to fruition, Neuheisel would be the second notable ex-college coach to join the league.

Steve Spurrier was announced over the weekend as the head coach of the league’s Orlando-based team, the first confirmed coach for the league. Details of the Orlando team, like with the Southern California squad, have not been announced yet. More details about the eight-team league are expected to continue to trickle out in the coming days and weeks.

Neuheisel, a former UCLA quarterback, had an 87-59 record in 12 seasons as a collegiate head coach — four at Colorado (1995-1998), four at Washington (1999-2002) and four at UCLA (2008-2011). He was fired by his alma mater at the conclusion of the 2011 season, finishing his tenure with a 21-29 record. Since then, Neuheisel has worked as an analyst for CBS Sports and Sirius XM.

Rick Neuheisel has not coached since his stint as head coach at UCLA, his alma mater. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)
Rick Neuheisel has not coached since his stint as head coach at UCLA, his alma mater. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

Sporting News reported last month that, in addition to Spurrier and Neuheisel, Mike Singletary, Jeff Fisher, Rob Ryan and others “fit the bill” as coaching candidates for the new league, which debuts Feb. 9, 2019. The Alliance will have a 10-week regular season with four of the eight teams making the playoffs.

Spurrier said some of the league’s rule changes made it an appealing way to get back into coaching.

“They want to have football games that last 2 and a half hours instead of four, four and a half, emphasis on safety,” Spurrier said. “There will be no kickoffs. No extra points, go for two every time. Some new rules in place. And trying not to stop the game with so many replays and commercials and all that sort of stuff. Keep the game moving.”

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Sam Cooper is a writer for Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him or follow him on Twitter!

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