Columbia Football Coach Norries Wilson Is Fired After 1-9 Season

Nov. 21 (Bloomberg) -- Columbia University fired football coach Norries Wilson the day after finishing a 1-9 season capped by a controversy involving the school’s marching band and a 35-28 double-overtime win against Brown University.

Wilson had a 17-43 record in six seasons at New York-based Columbia, including a 10-32 mark against Ivy League opponents. The school hasn’t had a winning season since 1996.

“In order to achieve the goals that we have set for the Columbia football program, we believe that it is necessary and appropriate to make a change in leadership at this time,” Columbia athletic director Dianne Murphy said in a statement.

Columbia’s victory two days ago over a Brown team that was 7-2 followed a flap involving the school’s marching band.

School officials said Nov. 17 that the band wouldn’t be able to perform in the season finale after mocking the then-winless football team. Following a 62-41 loss on Nov. 12 to Cornell University, Columbia’s band changed the lyrics of the school’s fight song to poke fun at the 0-9 Lions. The ban was reversed a day later, with Murphy citing the “free-speech values” of the university.

To contact the reporter on this story: Erik Matuszewski in New York at matuszewski@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Sillup at msillup@bloomberg.net