RENO — Nevada and coach Brian Polian agreed to part ways Sunday after four seasons in which the Wolf Pack never broke .500 in Mountain West games.
Polian, the son of former NFL executive and Pro Football Hall of Famer Bill Polian, was 23-27 since replacing Hall of Fame coach Chris Ault. Ault retired after the 2012 season.
A former assistant at Notre Dame, Stanford and Texas A&M, Polian wasn’t able to recreate the success the Wolf Pack had under Ault. Polian guided Nevada to bowl games and 7-6 seasons in years two and three.
The Wolf Pack slipped to 5-7 this season, and 3-5 in the Mountain West. Nevada did finish the season with a 45-10 victory against rival UNLV. Polian was 13-18 in conference games overall and never better than 4-4 in a season.
“This decision is about finding a new head coach who will help us win a championship, and who will continue to build and strengthen relationships within our department, our campus, our alumni and our great community,” athletic director Doug Knuth said in a statement. “The support from those constituencies is vital to the success of building a championship program.”
Polian had one year left on his original five-year contract. His salary was $575,000 this season, according to USA Today’s coaches’ salary database . Nevada’s athletic budget ranks at the bottom of the 12-team Mountain West.
Polian’s teams produced the two best Academic Progress Rate scores recorded by the program.
“I felt, and continue to feel, that we were building a solid foundation for this program,” Polian said in a statement. “However, this season was fraught with adversity and in the end, we did not win enough games. Like every coach, I understand that this is a business. I wish we would have produced better results in 2016.”
SAN JOSE STATE COACH FIRED
San Jose State fired football coach Ron Caragher on Sunday, the San Jose Mercury News reported.
Caragher went 19-30 in four years and did not produce a winning season despite taking over a Mountain West conference team that was fresh off one of the most successful years in school history.