Williams to be Yale's first black football coach

Published: Monday, January 5, 2009 at 9:21 p.m.
Last Modified: Monday, January 5, 2009 at 9:21 p.m.

NEW HAVEN, Conn. -- Jacksonville Jaguars assistant Tom Williams has been hired at Yale, becoming the first black head football coach at the Ivy League school.

A person familiar with the decision confirmed the choice Monday on condition of anonymity because a formal announcement had not been made. The school called a news conference for 2 p.m. Wednesday to introduce the new coach.

Williams, 38, has spent the past two seasons working with the Jaguars defense and has been an assistant coach at Hawaii, Washington, Stanford and San Jose State.

"I am happy for Tom," Jaguars head coach Jack Del Rio said in a text message to The Associated Press. "He has shown strong leadership qualities and is a very good communicator. This is a great opportunity for him."

Williams replaces Jack Siedlecki, who retired in November after 12 seasons to become an assistant athletic director at Yale. Siedlecki was 70-47 at the school, including 47-37 in the Ivy League. He led the Bulldogs to a share of the conference title in 1999 and 2006, but was just 4-8 against rival Harvard and had lost seven of the past eight games with the Crimson.

Yale went 6-4 this season, including 4-3 in the conference and a 10-0 loss to Harvard in the 125th edition of "The Game."

Siedlecki became coach after Hall of Famer Carm Cozza retired in 1996 after 32 seasons.

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