Tulsa fires head coach Bill Blankenship

Monday December 1st, 2014

Tulsa has fired head coach Bill Blankenship, athletic director Derrick Gragg announced in a statement on Monday.

Blankenship was the head coach at Tulsa for four seasons and posted a 24-27 record. The Golden Hurricane went 2-10 this season, including a 2-6 mark in its first year in the American Athletic Conference. Tulsa finished 3-9 in 2013.

Gragg also said a search committee will be formed immediately to find a new coach.

Blankenship, a former Tulsa quarterback and later an assistant coach, was hired as head coach after Todd Graham left for Pittsburgh in 2011. The Golden Hurricane went 19-8 over Blankenship's first two seasons, becoming bowl eligible in each. In 2012, Tulsa won the Conference USA and Blankenship was named its coach of the year.

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Tulsa's season ended Friday with a 49-32 home loss to East Carolina. The Golden Hurricane's 2-10 record is its worst since 2002, and the team was winless on the road. Blankenship evaluated the program after Friday's game, the Tulsa World reports.

"I certainly understand that we've not achieved at the level that we want to achieve," Blankenship said Friday night. "I'm as disappointed, I promise you, as anybody, but I also think very strongly that we have a future here. I think we can see that.

"I love what we have in our young players that got a lot of experience this year. We've got to do a good job of recruiting to build around them, but so far we're in really good places with our recruiting."

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Mike Fiammetta

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