The Arizona Wildcats got their man on Monday night when they hired former Michigan head coach Rich Rodriguez. Arizona fired Mike Stoops in October after the Wildcats started off the 2011 campaign 1-5. Stoops had gone 41-50 (27-38 in PAC-12 play) and 1-2 in bowl games in his seven plus years as head coach.
Arizona is hoping that Rodriguez will be more West Virginia than Michigan. In his short career at Michigan, Rodriguez went 15-22. As the Mountaineers head coach, Rodriguez was 60-26 and got West Virginia to two BCS bowl games. He won at least 10 games in his last three seasons at West Virginia. By comparison, Arizona has only had two ten win seasons total since they began playing football in 1899.
To be fair here, they've only been playing seasons long enough to make that stat relevant since the late 1940s. Arizona does have a win percentage better than 57% all-time, but is only 6-8-1 in bowl games. They have never played in the Rose Bowl and only shared a PAC-10 title in 1993. Arizona did stomp Miami 29-0 in the Fiesta Bowl that season.
Will Rodriguez be able to bring the Wildcats unprecedented success? The first thing he needs to do is hire the right defense coordinator who meshes with his spread-option offensive style.