Eastern Michigan has hired Ron English, making him the fifth black head football coach in major college football, a source familiar with the contract agreement told the

Associated Press

yesterday.

The person spoke on the condition of anonymity because the school hasn't announced its decision.

Eastern Michigan scheduled a news conference for today.

The other black coaches among the 119 teams in the NCAA's Football Bowl Subdivision are Buffalo's Turner Gill, Miami's Randy Shannon, Houston's Kevin Sumlin and New Mexico's Mike Locksley.

English, 40, was Louisville's defensive coordinator in 2008 after serving on Lloyd Carr's staff at Michigan for five seasons.

English turned the Cardinals' inexperienced defense around before an injury-depleted unit was overmatched in a lopsided loss to end the season at Rutgers.

After helping Michigan beat Florida in the 2008 Capital One Bowl, English chose to accept an offer from Louisville after being aggressively pursued by schools such as UCLA.

English was on Carr's staff for five seasons, the last two as defensive coordinator. He began at Michigan as the secondary coach after being an assistant at Arizona State, San Diego State and Northern Arizona.

He earned four letters at California, starting at safety for the Bears as a senior and ending his playing career in the 1990 Copper Bowl.

English replaces Jeff Genyk, who was fired last month after going 16-42 in five seasons.

In a bowl game last night:

* Michael McGee blocked a potential game-tying field goal attempt in overtime, lifting Southern Mississippi to a 30-27 comeback victory over Troy in the New Orleans Bowl.

Troy held Southern Miss to Britt Barefoot's 39-yard field goal on the first posesssion of OT, but that wound up being enough for the Golden Eagles to win their third New Orleans Bowl in as many appearances.

The Trojans, winners of the Sun Belt Conference, led 27-17 after Jerrel Jernigan's 6-yard touchdown run late in the third quarter.

Southern Miss responded with Austin Davis' 35-yard touchdown to Jonathan Massey on fourth-and-2 with 7:20 left in regulation. Barefoot tied it with his 46-yard field goal with 2:50 to go.

Noteworthy

* Wisconsin senior linebacker Jonathan Casillas and two other players will not play in the Champs Sports Bowl against Florida State.

Badgers coach Bret Bielema announced after Saturday's practice that Casillas, sophomore wide receiver Maurice Moore and redshirt freshman quarterback James Stallons will not travel to Orlando, Fla., when the team departs Monday morning. Both Casillas and Moore recently had surgeries.

Bielema said the team had at least one academically ineligible player but declined to say it was Stallons, citing privacy issues.

* Duke has given David Cutcliffe a 2-year contract extension. The Blue Devils said they extended Cutcliffe's contract through 2015. Terms were not released, as is customary at the private school.

* Texas Christian might play without standout linebacker Robert Henson in the Poinsettia Bowl tomorrow night when No. 11 TCU faces No. 9 Boise State.

Henson did not practice on Saturday and coach Gary Patterson indicated there's a chance Henson won't be on the field against the Broncos. *