Rich Rodriguez, who made headlines, good and bad, during his time as head coach at West Virginia and Michigan, has been hired by the University of Arizona as their new head football coach.
The initial announcement was made via Twitter by Arizona Wildcats athletic director Greg Byrne, who tweeted a photo of Rodriguez and his family. His official introductory press conference will come Tuesday at noon MST (2 p.m. EST), the team announced in a press release.
Rodriguez brings with him the reputation for installing a fast-paced, spread attack and prolific offenses. However, his offensive schemes weren't enough all by themselves at Michigan. RichRod's teams struggled defensively during his three-year reign and he was fired following the 2010 season despite a 7-6 record. He was 15-22 overall at Michigan.
Rodriguez's talents are probably best appreciated from his seven-year reign at West Virginia, where he led the Mountaineers to four Big East titles and two BCS bowls.
He is 120-84-2 overall as a head coach.
Rodriguez will replace Mike Stoops, who was fired in October after a 1-5 start in 2011 and a 41-50 record in eight seasons at Arizona. The Wildcats are currently 3-8 with one game remaining in their season. Defensive coordinator Tim Kish is currently the interim coach.
Arizona will need patience if they want the Rich Rodriguez Era to succeed. With his intricate offensive schemes, RichRod needs very specific players who must be developed in his system. Recruiting players that fit his offense will be paramount from the get-go. The lack of leeway and patience in Ann Arbor, as well as the team's defensive struggles, didn't suit that kind of coaching style. Perhaps Arizona will be different.