Tulane football won't be without a coach for much longer. The university will hire Willie Fritz away from Georgia Southern, multiple sources tell SB Nation's Steven Godfrey. The news was first reported by The Advocate's Scott Kushner.
The Green Wave will make the move in hopes of reviving a program that's only been to one bowl game since 2002. Fritz was tabbed as the man to lead the GSU to college football's toughest division in 2014 and found immediate success with a ready-built roster who ran all over the Sun Belt. That allowed the veteran coach to continue a tradition of winning in Statesboro; Fritz has a 17-7 record as an FBS head coach. This year, his Eagles ranked first in the nation when it came to rushing offense at 355 yards per game.
Tulane probably won't rely on the triple option attack that made Georgia Southern famous, however. Signs point to him installing a spread offense in New Orleans. Fritz inherited a triple option roster with the Eagles, and modified it to include more spread principles. He also ran a spread offense at Sam Houston State, his previous head coaching job.
Fritz has a long history in college football. He was a defensive back at Pittsburg State from 1978 to '81, and he got his coaching start as a student assistant at his alma mater in 1982. After a two-year stint as a grad assistant at Sam Houston State sandwiched between two high school jobs, he served as defensive coordinator at Coffeyville Community College from 1987 to 1990. He returned to Sam Houston in '91, coaching defensive backs and special teams for two seasons.
In 1993, Fritz began his first head coaching job at Blinn College. He moved on to Central Missouri in 1997, where he stayed for 12 years. The Mules were 97-47 under Fritz and made one appearance in the Division II playoffs, suffering a first-round defeat in 2002.
Fritz took over the program at Sam Houston State in 2010 and led the Bearkats to a 6-5 record in his first season. Over the last three years, the team is 34-10. The Bearkats won the Southland Conference title in 2011 and 2012. That proficiency earned him the opportunity to take Georgia Southern from the FCS to the Sun Belt, and he responded with a pair of winning seasons and an 8-0 conference record in his first year.
The Green Wave fired previous coach Curtis Johnson back on Nov. 28 after a second straight 3-9 season. Johnson was the architect behind Tulane's last postseason appearance -- a loss in the 2013 New Orleans Bowl -- but had just a 15-34 record overall with the program.
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