FORT WORTH, Texas -- North Texas is going back to an experienced college coach.
Dan McCarney, a Florida assistant and former Iowa State head coach, will be announced as the new coach of the Mean Green on Tuesday, a person familiar with the decision told the Associated Press on Monday. The person would not comment publicly because the announcement had not been made.
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McCarney brings a wealth of experience to the job, something is predecessor didn't have.
Todd Dodge was fired this season in the fourth year of a five-year deal. He was hired before the 2007 season after going 79-1 and winning four state championships in his final five years at nearby Southlake Carroll High School, making North Texas the first upper-division school to elevate a head coach straight from high school since Notre Dame with Gerry Faust in 1981.
Instead, Dodge finished with a record of 6-37, including a 1-6 start this year. Offensive coordinator Mike Canales was the interim head coach as the Mean Green ended the season 3-9 following Saturday's loss to Kansas State.
McCarney has coached the defense at Florida since 2008 after spending a year at South Florida following his departure from Iowa State. When he left, he was the longest-tenured coach in the Big 12.
The Cyclones were 56-84 under McCarney, a lackluster overall record but one that includes five bowl appearances, the first two bowl victories in school history and a 6-6 record against rival Iowa. An Iowa graduate, he coached at Iowa for 13 seasons, 11 under Hayden Fry, before becoming the defensive coordinator at Wisconsin under Barry Alvarez in 1990.
The Mean Green will hope all that experience counts. North Texas replaced Darrell Dickey with Dodge after back-to-back losing seasons that followed four consecutive Sun Belt championships, hoping Dodge's spread offense and high school success would energize fans while they pitched a plan for a new stadium.
The $78 million project to replace Fouts Field will debut next year.