UNC Finalizes Fedora Hire

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. -- North Carolina is set to announce Southern Miss's Larry Fedora as its new head football coach after contract details were finalized on Wednesday, according to sources familiar with the search process.

InsideCarolina.com first reported that Fedora had agreed to become UNC's coach on Tuesday afternoon.

Fedora interviewed with UNC athletic director Bubba Cunningham on Monday in New York City. Houston's Kevin Sumlin and Cincinnati's Butch Jones were also scheduled to interview with UNC in New York, where athletic directors and coaches from across the country converged for the National Football Foundation Annual Awards Dinner held at the Waldorf Astoria on Tuesday evening.

One source told Inside Carolina that Fedora "hit a home run" and further distanced himself from the other potential candidates with a strong interview. He stressed the importance of the faculty and football program walking in step with one another, as well as the need for discipline on and off the field.

Fedora was expected to tell his team at Southern Miss before the press conference in Chapel Hill, which is expected on Friday.

According to published reports, Fedora also interviewed with Texas A&M on Monday.

Fedora reportedly turned down the Ole Miss and Kansas jobs, but continued to have his name linked to the Arizona State and Texas A&M openings through the weekend.

IC first confirmed Fedora as a UNC candidate on Nov. 8.

Fedora, 49, has delivered a 33-19 record during his four-year tenure at Southern Miss and directed the Golden Eagles to a 49-28 upset over undefeated Houston in the 2011 Conference USA championship game on Saturday.

Southern Miss has ranked in the top-40 nationally in all four offensive statistical categories – rushing, passing, total and scoring – in each of Fedora's four seasons. Southern Miss has averaged 443.6 yards and 34.8 points per game during his tenure.

Fedora came to Southern Miss after spending the three previous seasons as the Oklahoma State offensive coordinator. His offenses improved in rushing, passing and total offense stats each season and his '06 and '07 squads ranked in the top-10 nationally in rushing and top-20 in total offense, while also scoring more than 30 points per game.

In '09, Southern Miss was one of 39 FBS institutions in 2009 recognized for its Graduation Success Rate (GSR) by the American Football Coaches Association.

Prior to his stint at OSU, Fedora worked for three seasons at Florida in various roles – run game coordinator (‘02), perimeter game coordinator (‘03) and offensive coordinator in '04. In Fedora's final season in Gainesville, the Gators led the SEC in six different categories – passing offense (271.1), total offense (426.9), 3rd-down conversion percentage (47.8), touchdown passes (29), pass attempts (407) and pass completions (243).

Fedora served as Middle Tennessee's offensive coordinator from '99-01. His MTSU offenses averaged 424 yards of total offense, 181 rushing yards and 31 points per game and broke 43 school records.

Fedora earned honorable mention All-America honors in '83 and '84 as a wide receiver at Austin College in Texas. His alma mater provided the start to his coaching career as a graduate assistant in 1986. After three years as a high school assistant coach at Garland (Texas) High School, Fedora took a job at Baylor in '91 and coached tight ends, wide receivers and running backs until '96, when he coached the passing game at Air Force for two seasons.


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