Old Dominion Hires Wilder as Head Coach
Monarchs Will Field First Football Team Since 1940
By MATT REED
RICHMOND, Va. (Feb. 9) - Former University of Maine associate head coach Bobby Wilder was hired as the second football coach ever at Old Dominion, which will field a team in 2009 for the first time since 1940.
Wilder will be introduced to the media Monday as the Monarchs' head coach, Old Dominion athletic director Jim Jarrett said in a statement Friday.
The 46-year-old Wilder coached the last 17 years at Maine, where he also played quarterback. Wilder was offensive coordinator in 2000 and 2001 when the Black Bears won the Atlantic 10 Conference.
The late Tommy Scott coached the Monarchs from 1930 to 1940.
Old Dominion announced last May that it would restore football and compete in the Colonial Athletic Association, which had been I-AA and is now called the Football Championship Subdivision.
The drive to add football started with a request from the student body, and continued with similar appeals from the alumni and then a unanimous endorsement from the board of visitors last year.
The school is using contributions of nearly $6 million from alumni, students and community leaders, and has employed two veteran football coaches - former Navy and Virginia coach George Welsh and former North Carolina State coach Dick Sheridan - to serve as consultants as it builds its program.
The Monarchs will play home games at Foreman Field, a 20,000-seat stadium that will get upgraded and have suites built in one end zone.
The artificial turf will be replaced by either grass or a newer synthetic surface, and the field hockey and lacrosse programs that have used the field will move to a stadium to be built nearby.