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06 December 2017, 01:12 | Rodolfo Wallace
UCF Knights have named Missouri Offensive Coordinator Josh Heupel the next head coach to lead the UCF football program
This morning University of Central Florida Vice President and Director of Athletics Dr. Daniel J. White announced that Josh Heupel (pronounced hype-ill) will take over as the new head football coach. The university also reportedly considered Clemson co-offensive coordinator Tony Elliott, Toledo head coach Jason Candle and UCF interim head coach Troy Walters for the position. "I'm very excited to get a staff together and get to work with our wonderful student-athletes", Josh Heupel said in a UCF release. It's unclear how the Missouri players learned of the news, but wide receiver Emmanuel Hall was quick to point out the turnover in the job - a third coach in four years. The Knights will play Auburn in the Peach Bowl in Atlanta on January 1.
Athletic director Danny White believes UCF has "identified one of the brightest minds in college football" in Heupel.
Heupel's last game calling plays for the Sooners was inside the now-named Camping World Stadium, which is only 16 miles from the UCF campus. He was the man under center who brought the team back from the brink, alongside then-new head coach Bob Stoops. The former linebacker at Miami has won three national championships as a coach and a player. Heupel said. "Me being an offensive guy, getting the right hire on defense was critical".
"I think we got a victor, someone that will lead our group as the rest of our head coaches do", White said. "When I was first contacted about this opportunity, interviewing for the job here, you immediately start to go through and pull some guys that you want to have on staff. I'm confident we can continue the momentum".
The 39-year-old Heupel is practically the same age Frost was (40, nearly 41) when he was hired at UCF, along with the obvious parallel of both being successful, national title-winning collegiate quarterbacks.
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Heupel said he runs a no huddle and fast paced style of offense.
Missouri's Drew Lock led the Southeastern Conference in passing this season, throwing for 3,695 yards and 43 touchdowns vs. 12 interceptions.
Frost led a stunning turnaround at UCF, which finished 0-12 just two years ago.
Heupel, a former Oklahoma quarterback, helped guide Missouri to a surprising turnaround this season.
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