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Matt Rhule introduced as Carolina Panthers head coach

'Keeping pounding isn't just a slogan. It's a way of life,' Rhule said Tuesday after being formally introduced.
Credit: Carolina Panthers
Matt Rhule was introduced as the new head coach of the Carolina Panthers on January 8, 2019.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Matt Rhule was formally introduced Tuesday as the new head coach of the Carolina Panthers Wednesday afternoon, the team announced. 

Rhule and his family left Waco, Texas for Charlotte Wednesday morning. Rhule has spent the last three seasons as head coach of Baylor University, leading the Bears to an 11-win season and appearance in the Sugar Bowl this year. 

He becomes the fifth coach of the Panthers.

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The following was a live blog.

2:35 p.m.: News conference with Rhule concludes.

2:28 p.m.: Rhule was reportedly scheduled to also interview with the New York Giant. When asked by WCNC NBC Charlotte Sports Director Nick Carboni why he decided not to attend that meeting and instead took the offer from the Carolina Panthers, Rhule credits his family. Rhule said his wife and son were adamant about the opportunity in Charlotte. "My son came downstairs and asked, 'Are we going to Carolina?' Rhule recalled. "He stormed out of the house." Rhule said he accepted the job when it was offered the next day.

2:25 p.m.: When asked if he would be bringing staff from Baylor and Temple, Rhule said he will have a "diverse" staff. He recalls hiring in Texas from the NFL and said he could do the reverse here - but did not name specific people. "Don't rush. Get the right people," Rhule said.

2:24 p.m.: "I'm going to be demanding but I'm going to be accountable of myself," Rhule said.

2:21 p.m.: When asked about Cam, Rhule said he has not yet spoken to David Tepper and Marty Hurney about Cam Newton. Rhule said he talked to Cam Monday. Both men wanted to talk about the future and not the past. Rhule did not provide further detials.

2:20 p.m.: Rhule closes his opening remarks as head coach by telling everyone to "keep pounding." He is now prepared to take questions.

2:19 p.m.: Rhule is thanking his players in Texas, including at Baylor and Temple.

2:18 p.m.: "I'm going to tell you when I'm wrong," Rhule said.

2:17 p.m.: "I want guys who want to be the best: Whether we're playing Madden or the championship game," Rhule said.

2:16 p.m.: "Keeping pounding isn't just a slogan. It's a way of life," Rhule said.

2:15 p.m.: "I will work heard to bring you a championship," Rhule said. "Everything has to be our best each and every day."

2:11 p.m.: Rhule recalls his time recruiting for Western Carolina University from 2002 until 2005.  He said his wife drove him around Charlotte during one particular recruiting trip where he was suffering  from a sore throat. 

2:11 p.m.: "Family is the most important thing to me," Rhule said. "I would not be here without them."

2:10 p.m.: Rhule said it was clear as soon as he started talking with Tepper, who help him carry things in after returning from a trip to Mexico.

2:09 p.m.: Rhule begins by thanking the Teppers. "Thank you for trusting me with your prized football franchise."

2:08 p.m.: Matt Rhule begins speaking at the podium.

2:07 p.m.: Carolina Panthers owner David Tepper begins speaking about Rhule, and how they first met him at his house in Waco after Rhule returned from a trip to Mexico. "We knew we had something special," Tepper said.

2 p.m.: Formal event begins.


10:55 a.m.: The plane carrying Matt Rhule and his family arrives at Wilson Air Center in Charlotte. 

9:52 a.m.: The Panthers announce that Rhule's press conference will be streamed live on Panthers.com. You can also watch it live on WCNC NBC Charlotte. 

9:27 a.m.: The Panthers tweet a photo of Rhule and his family preparing to board a plane for Charlotte with the caption, "It's happening." 

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