Tuberville left Texas Tech to become Cincinnati's football coach Saturday, moving away from a Big 12 school to one that has an uncertain future with conference realignment. He left the Red Raiders after three years to coach at a school where his recent predecessors have lasted no longer.
Two hours after Cincinnati's 11th-ranked basketball team won its ninth game of the season, the Bearcats hauled out their Big East trophies and held a pep rally — complete with cheerleaders, band and several hundred fans — for the new coach at midcourt.
"There's always a next step," Tuberville said. "I'm going to get the question: Why did you come to Cincinnati? That's exactly it."
His quick hiring ended a whirlwind week in Cincinnati, which had won a share of its fourth Big East title in the past five years a week earlier. Coach Butch Jones interviewed at Purdue and Colorado before accepting the job at Tennessee on Friday morning.
Athletics Director Whit Babcock had Tuberville — whom he worked with for three years at Auburn — at the top of his list of candidates. Working on two hours of sleep, Babcock called Tuberville on Saturday morning to see whether he was interested.
"I was perfectly satisfied," Tuberville said. "I had a great home in Lubbock, Texas. The people of west Texas are great people, they love football. Our football team played hard. … But there was something when Whit called that I thought, 'You know? Let me think about this.'"
Navy defeats Army
Keenan Reynolds extended Navy's dominance against Army, scoring the winning touchdown late in the fourth quarter in a 17-13 victory in the 113th rivalry game Saturday.
Navy (8-4) won the Commander-in-Chief's Trophy awarded to the team with the best record in games among the three service academies. Army and Navy each beat Air Force, putting the prestigious trophy up for grabs in the regular-season finale for the first time since 2005.
Army (2-10) hasn't hoisted the CIC trophy since 1996.
The Black Knights came close, but Navy recovered a late fumble, and Reynolds' eight-yard rushing score made it 17-13.
In front of 69,607 fans and Vice President Joe Biden at Lincoln Financial Field, Navy caught a break when Army missed a late field-goal attempt.
Reynolds quickly found Ejay Turner down the sideline for a 49-yard gain. Reynolds then escaped a rush and followed with the eight-yard touchdown run with 4:41 left in the game.
Unlike previous games over the last decade, the Black Knights were in this one until the final drive. Army had driven to the 14 when fullback Larry Dixon fumbled on a sloppy exchange. Navy recovered and the Midshipmen went wild and rushed the field.
Taggart headed to South Florida
Willie Taggart is taking over as South Florida's football coach after establishing himself as one of the nation's top young prospects by turning around a losing program at Western Kentucky.
"I always said I wouldn't leave WKU unless I had a chance to go and win a national championship, and I truly believe that can be done here," Taggart said Saturday after signing a five-year, $5.75 million contract to replace Skip Holtz, who was fired after the worst season in USF's 16-year history.
Taggart, 36, led Western Kentucky to a 7-5 record this season. The Hilltoppers, who made defensive coordinator Lance Guidry the interim coach on Saturday, will make their first postseason appearance since joining the Football Bowl Subdivision when they face Central Michigan in the Little Caesars Bowl.
A former assistant at Stanford to Jim Harbaugh, Taggart takes over a program that went 16-21 under Holtz, who dropped nine of 10 games following a 2-0 start this season.