Sep 23, 2023; Houston, Texas, USA; General view of Houston Cougars helmets on the sideline before the game against the Sam Houston State Bearkats at TDECU Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

As the college football world waits to find out which four teams will make up this year’s playoff, Houston made some headlines of its own by announcing the hiring Tulane’s Willie Fritz as its next head coach.

“No one in the country has been better at leading and developing student-athletes than Willie Fritz,” Houston athletic director Chris Pezman said in a statement. “Over his more than three-decades of head coaching experience, he has guided several football programs to historic success.”

The 63-year-old Fritz has been the head coach of the Green Wave since 2016, leading the program to a 54-47 record over the course of eight seasons. Tulane has won at least 11 games in each of the past two seasons, including a 12-2 mark in 2022 and an 11-2 record this past season, including a perfect 8-0 run in AAC regular-season play. The 17th-ranked Green Wave, however, fell short of a second consecutive conference championship, losing to No. 25 SMU 26-14 in the AAC Championship Game on Saturday.

Prior to his time at Tulane, Fritz spent time as the head coach at Georgia Southern (2014-2015), Sam Houston State (2010-2013) and Central Missouri (1997-2009). Over the course of his career, the reigning two-time AAC Coach of the Year has amassed a 208-116 record and won five conference titles.

In heading to Houston, Fritz will take over a Cougars program that is coming off a 4-8 debut season as a member of the Big 12, including a 2-7 record in conference play. Following the firing of head coach Dana Holgorsen, Houston will now turn to Fritz to lead the Cougars as they look to take advantage of the upcoming departures of Texas and Oklahoma to to SEC.

Following the news of Houston’s hiring of Fritz, many took to social media to weigh in.


About Ben Axelrod

Ben Axelrod is a veteran of the sports media landscape, having most recently worked for NBC's Cleveland affiliate, WKYC. Prior to his time in Cleveland, he covered Ohio State football and the Big Ten for outlets including Cox Media Group, Bleacher Report, Scout and Rivals.