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Morgan State football to hire former NFL running back Tyrone Wheatley as head coach

Morgan State football to hire former NFL running back Tyrone Wheatley as head coach
Former Oakland Raiders running back Tyrone Wheatley (right, pictured in a game on Sept. 9, 2001) is expected to be named the 22nd head coach of the Morgan State football program. (ORLIN WAGNER / AP)

Former New York Giants and Oakland Raiders running back Tyrone Wheatley will be named the 22nd head coach of the Morgan State football program, possibly as soon as Wednesday, according to a university source.

Wheatley, who will be the school’s fifth coach in the past seven years, will replace Ernest T. Jones, who had been the interim head coach last fall. Under Jones, the Bears went 4-7 overall and 3-4 mark in the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference, where they finished seventh out of 10 teams.

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The university had announced Nov. 19 that it would conduct a national search for a permanent coach. On Wednesday morning, athletic director Edward Scott said via a university spokesman that he “won’t be making any comments until a contract is fully executed.”

Wheatley, who turned 47 on Jan. 19, starred at the University of Michigan and was the 17th overall pick in the 1995 NFL draft by the Giants. He played four years for New York and then six more for Oakland.

After retiring from the NFL, Wheatley began coaching, starting at his alma mater, Dearborn Heights Robichaud High School in Michigan, in 2007. Since then, he has been the running backs coach at the NCAA level at Ohio Northern (2008), Eastern Michigan (2009), Syracuse (2010-12) and Michigan (2015-16), and in the NFL with the Buffalo Bills (2013-14) and Jacksonville Jaguars (2017-18). Wheatley was one of four assistant coaches fired by Jacksonville on Dec. 31.

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