UAB is pulling the plug on its football program.
According to multiple reports Tuesday, the school decided to disband the sport because of financial issues resulting from lack of attendance without an on-campus stadium and the struggle for attention in a state with high-profile programs at Alabama and Auburn.
Ironically, the move comes after first-year coach Bill Clark led the Blazers to a 6-6 record — their best season in a decade — and postseason eligibility in the Football Bowl Subdivision. And UAB’s average attendance doubled this season to more than 20,000 fans per game.
The impact of eliminating football will affect the school’s affiliation with Conference USA, which is expected to drop UAB if it no longer has football.
A student protest at a campus rally on Monday included the members of the marching band and the cheerleaders.
USA Today reported that athletics director Brian Mackin is working on a separation agreement from the university.
UAB would become the first FBS program to eliminate football since the University of Pacific in 1995.