Despite Strong Denial, Rogers Jumps to Lions

The Detroit Lions announced Wednesday that they had hired Darryl Rogers, football coach at Arizona State University, as their coach and director of operations.

Rogers, who Tuesday night had strongly denied rumors that he would be taking the job with the National Football League team, will replace Monte Clark, who was fired last year after the team finished 4-11-1. Clark had coached the team seven years, and took the Lions to a Central Division title in 1983.

The Lions had hoped to wait until the college football recruiting season was over before naming Rogers, according to Russ Thomas, the team's executive vice president and general manager. Word of the team's selection leaked, however, and the Lions decided to make their choice public, he said.

"Darryl is still going to work with the University and help them in their recruiting program," Thomas said in a statement.

Rogers left Michigan State University after the 1979 season to become coach at Arizona State, where he compiled a 37-17-1 record over four seasons.

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