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Report: Raiders axe Bill Callahan

Dec. 31, 2003 at 3:21 AM

WALNUT CREEK, Calif., Dec. 31 (UPI) -- It appears Bill Callahan has joined the ranks of unemployed NFL head coaches.

The Contra Coast Times is reporting that one season after taking the Oakland Raiders to the Super Bowl, Callahan has been fired. The move comes in the wake of a dismal 4-12 season, Oakland's worst since going 1-13 in 1962, and player unhappiness.

The paper cited a source as saying the Raiders, after a meeting between Callahan and team executives, decided Tuesday afternoon not to pick up the first of two option years on his contract, and that an announcement will be made some time on Wednesday.

In his rookie season in 2002, Callahan guided the Raiders to a regular season mark of 11-5. He will become the sixth coach to either resign or be fired. Those fired were Jim Fassel (N.Y. Giants), Dan Reeves (Atlanta), Dick Jauron (Chicago), Gregg Williams (Buffalo), and Dave McGinnis (Arizona). Steve Spurrier resigned from the Washington Redskins on Tuesday.

An ongoing feud with star cornerback Charles Woodson did not help.

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