Niumatalolo spurns Arizona, stays at Navy

Khalil Tate Responds to Reports Ken Niumatalolo in Running for Arizona HC Job

Khalil Tate Responds to Reports Ken Niumatalolo in Running for Arizona HC Job

Navy coach Ken Niumatalolo has chose to stay in Annapolis, Md., announcing on Sunday that he's withdrawn from the Arizona coaching search.

Sports Illustrated's Bruce Feldman first reported that Niumatalolo was no longer considering the vacant Arizona job.

Niumatalolo reportedly was Arizona's top choice, but the Wildcats must now turn their attention elsewhere.

Niumatalolo has also been linked to recent openings at Oregon, Oregon State and Cal, and two years ago, he interviewed at BYU. Before taking over in 2007, Niumatalolo served as the assistant head coach and offensive line coach from 2002 up until that point.

Despite his rushing prowess, Tate expressed dismay with the thought of running Niumatalolo's triple-option offense.

Sources tell FootballScoop this tweet spooked Arizona's president and gave him pause during the search. Some might suppose the firm should have been more proactive in addressing known potential concerns of star players; but alas some seem to value secrecy over hiring the right man. Former Texas A&M coach Kevin Sumlin should get strong consideration.

Arizona now must turn its attention elsewhere in a coaching search that's approaching two weeks after the January 2 firing of Rich Rodriguez.

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