Bulldogs may hire Friend as OL coach

Bulldogs may hire Friend as OL coach

February 7th, 2011 by David Paschall in Sports

Georgia football coach Mark Richt could be on the verge of reaching out to a familiar Friend.

Will Friend, who was a graduate assistant with the Bulldogs during the 2003-04 seasons, may be named as early as today or Tuesday as Georgia's new offensive line coach, two sources familiar with the search told the Times Free Press on Sunday. Friend has spent the past four seasons as UAB's offensive line coach under Neil Callaway, who was Richt's offensive coordinator and line coach during the 2001-06 seasons.

Callaway was tabbed UAB's head coach in December 2006, and Friend was among his first three hires.

Friend is well-versed in the Southeastern Conference, having been a four-year starting guard for Alabama from 1993-96. The Crimson Tide won three SEC West titles in that four-year stretch, losing to Florida each time in the league's championship game, and posted victories in the Gator, Capital One (then the Citrus) and Outback bowls.

Following his stint at Georgia, Friend left to become offensive line coach at Gardner-Webb for two seasons. In each of the past two years at UAB, the Blazers have ranked among the top 30 teams nationally in total offense and endured just 12 sacks in 12 games this past season.

Contact David Paschall at dpaschall@timesfreepress.com or 423-757-6524.