Feb. 23, 2001
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. - Former NFL and Alabama Crimson Tide great Woodrow Lowe will join the UAB Football coaching staff as linebackers coach, Blazer head coach Watson Brown announced today.
"I'm very excited to have Woodrow join our staff," said Brown.
"He is an outstanding football coach who is very well known in our state, as a high school coach, as a professional coach, and of course as a great football player. He will bring a lot to our staff and to our football team."
Lowe comes to UAB from the coaching staff of the Oakland Raiders, where he spent the past two seasons as a defensive assistant. He spent the previous four seasons on the coaching staff of the Kansas City Chiefs, handling both linebackers as well as assisting on special teams.
At UAB, Lowe will work with a defensive unit that returns as many as nine players with starting experience and finished the 2000 season ranked 11th in total defense in the NCAA Division I-A statistics.
"I'm getting an opportunity to come back home and work in a really good situation," said Lowe.
"UAB has a really up-and-coming program, and I'm just grateful to be able to have an opportunity to give back something and work with some great people. It's amazing what UAB has done with this program in such a short time. Coach Brown is a real pioneer. I'm really looking forward to it."
Brown said that he plans to name a new defensive coordinator and announce the hiring of an additional assistant coach in the next few days. Two Blazer assistants, defensive coordinator and linebackers coach Bill Clay, and running backs coach George Pugh, left the UAB staff to take new jobs - Clay at Oklahoma State, Pugh at Arkansas - in recent weeks.
"We will settle on another coaching position and on titles early next week," he said.
Lowe, 44, coached at Russell County High in Seale, Alabama for two seasons, then moved to his alma mater, Central High in Phenix City, Alabama, where he helped lead the school to a state title in 1992.
For the next two years, Lowe was head coach at Selma High School in Alabama before joining the Kansas City coaching staff in 1995.
Lowe spent 11 seasons in the NFL as a linebacker with San Diego, where he played in (164) and started (151) more games than any other defensive player in Chargers history. Lowe served as Chargers team captain seven straight seasons, playing during the legendary "Air Coryell" era alongside greats such as Dan Fouts, Kellen Winslow and John Jefferson. He missed just one game in his pro career.
The Columbus, Georgia native entered pro football as a fifth round pick of the Chargers following an outstanding career at the University of Alabama (1972-75). He earned All-America honors three straight years while playing under the legendary Bear Bryant and was the captain of the Crimson Tide's 1973 National Championship team.
Lowe will be inducted into the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame Feb. 24.
Lowe and his wife Linda have two sons and two daughters.