UAB Blazers

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UAB Blazers

General Information

  • NCAA Division: Division I
  • Conference: Conference USA (1999-present)
  • City: Birmingham, Ala.
  • Stadium: Protective Stadium

Championships

  • National Championships: None
  • Conference Titles: 2 (2018, 2020)
  • Divisional Championships: 3 (2018, 2019, 2020)

Past Conferences

  • None

Team History

The UAB Blazers are a Division I program based in Birmingham, Ala. UAB — also known as the University of Alabama at Birmingham — is a member of Conference USA and is coached by former NFL quarterback Trent Dilfer.

UAB eliminated its program following the 2014 season due to financial constraints. Its absence was brief though, as the Blazers returned to competition in 2017. In its first year back from a two-year hiatus, the Blazers went 8-5, including 6-2 in C-USA play, under Bill Clark and overcame odds to become bowl eligible. The Blazers wound up losing 41-6 to Ohio in the Bahamas Bowl.

The Blazers have made six straight bowls overall, including in 2018 when they won 11 games and captured the C-USA championship. They capped the season by routing Northern Illinois 37-13 in the Boca Raton Bowl — their first bowl victory in program history.

UAB also scored bowl wins in 2021 and 2022, beating BYU (Independence Bowl) and Miami of Ohio (Bahamas Bowl), respectively.

Clark, the second-winningest coach in program history, resigned before the 2022 season, citing back issues. Bryant Vincent, UAB’s former offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach, was promoted to replace Clark on an interim basis. Vincent guided UAB to a 7-6 record and a 24-20 victory over Miami (Ohio) in the Bahamas Bowl.

Before the bowl game, Dilfer, who played 14 years in the NFL, was announced as UAB’s next coach. Dilfer played for five different franchises from 1994 to 2007 and won Super Bowl XXXV as quarterback of the Baltimore Ravens.

He has coached for the last four years at Lipscomb Academy, a private high school in Nashville.

Dilfer’s arrival comes at a pivotal time for the program, as the Blazers are due to join the American Athletic Conference next season. Five other C-USA schools are poised to follow them: Charlotte, Florida Atlantic, North Texas, Rice, and UTSA.

UAB’s first bowl appearance came in 2004, a 59-40 loss to Hawaii in the Hawaii Bowl. Before that, the Blazers had stints as a Division III (1991-92) and Division I-AA (1993-95) independent. The Blazers transitioned to Division I-A (now known as the Football Bowl Subdivision) in 1996.

The Blazers’ alumni base includes former NFL Pro Bowlers Roddy White, the program’s all-time leading receiver, and Jordan Howard, along with Joe Webb and Bryan Thomas.

All-Time Records

Passing Yards

o Darrell Hackney: 9,886
o Joe Webb: 5,771
o Tyler Johnston III: 4,837
o Dylan Hopkins: 4,750
o Jonathan Perry: 4,554

Rushing Yards

o Spencer Brown: 4,011
o DeWayne McBride: 3,523
o Joe Webb: 2,774
o Jordan Howard: 2,468
o Darrin Reaves: 2,337

Receiving Yards

o Roddy White: 3,112
o J.J. Nelson: 2.273
o Frantell Forrest: 2,215
o Trea Shropshire: 1,936
o Jackie Williams: 1,733

What is the worst season in UAB program history?

The 2013 Blazers went 1-7 in Conference USA play and 2-10 overall, with their only wins against Northwestern State and Florida International. The defense was an issue, as they allowed a whopping 43.8 points per game. It was Garrick McGee’s final season as head coach.

Who holds UAB’s record for career touchdown passes?

Darrell Hackney threw a school-record 71 touchdowns from 2002-05. Hackney, who also holds the school’s career passing record, went undrafted in 2006 and had stints in the NFL with the Cleveland Browns and Denver Broncos.

What is the winningest season in UAB program history?

UAB won a program-record 11 games in 2018. The Blazers also captured the C-USA title and defeated Northern Illinois 37-13 in the Boca Raton Bowl.

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