Neil Callaway knows about football championships: He has coached or played for teams that have won or shared seven Southeastern Conference championships and one Conference USA title.

Now Callaway is bringing that championship experience to UAB after being named the third football coach in school history Dec. 17, 2006.

“Coach Callaway brings to UAB a hard-nosed attitude, both on the field and in the classroom,” said UAB interim Athletics Director Richard Margison. “He knows how to win. He has been connected with winning programs everywhere he has been, and he will bring that attitude and experience to UAB.”

Callaway, a Macon, Ga., native, said UAB has established a “solid foundation” when it comes to creating and developing a football program, and he intends to take it to new heights.

“I’m looking forward to building on what exists and taking it farther than people can imagine,” Callaway said.

Callaway is in the process of putting his coaching staff together and already has hired four assistants. Will Friend, Tyson Summers, Steve Davenport and Corey Barlow agreed to join Callaway within a week of his hiring.

Friend, a four-year starter on Alabama’s offensive line from 1993-96 and an assistant coach at Gardner-Webb the past two seasons, will coach the offensive line. Summers, who played his college ball at Presbyterian College and coached at Georgia Southern this past season, is the linebackers coach.

Davenport, a three-year starter at wide receiver at Georgia Tech in the late 1980s and a former Georgia high-school coach of the year, will coach the offense. Barlow will coach UAB’s cornerbacks. Barlow, an Atlanta native, was a standout performer at Auburn in the early 1990s and coached at the University of Rhode Island this past season.