Phil Martin, a former coach of the semiprofessional Montgomery County Cardinals, has been named football coach at Montgomery College-Rockville.

Martin, an assistant professor at the junior college, replaces Steve Wilson, whose firing earlier this month provoked protests from players, parents and the team booster club.

The announcement of Martin's hiring was made Tuesday, just before a group of 50 players and team supporters met to discuss strategy to get Wilson rehired.

"I haven't given up on Steve Wilson yet," said Tom Allen, president of the booster club, who vowed to take the issue to county and state officials who control the budget for the community college. "We just have to go outside this college administration and play some politics."

Wilson, who compiled a 21-9 record during three years as coach at Montgomery, was told June 10 he would not be rehired. Part of the reason given for that decision, he said, was an incident involving out-of-state football players who left the area without paying a $1,700 bill at a local motel. The motel owners complained that since Wilson had helped arrange the accommodations for the players, he and the school were responsible for the debt.

Wilson said he sent two players to the motel to talk to its owners. But he denied that he ever promised to guarantee a financial arrangement.