By Neil Patrick Healy
The Nevada football program will have a new head coach for the 2017 season.
Nevada athletics director Doug Knuth announced today that the university and head football coach Brian Polian have mutually agreed to part ways, according to a press release from the Nevada athletic department. The announcement comes on the heels of Nevada’s blowout win over rival UNLV to end the season and finishing 2016 with a 5-7 record. A national search for potential replacement candidates will be underway immediately.
“I appreciate the opportunity that I was given by President Johnson and the University of Nevada four years ago,” Polian said in a statement. “I felt, and continue to feel, that we were building a solid foundation for this program. 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.”
Since Polian was hired in 2013, Nevada has had an overall record of 23-27 with a 14-18 record in Mountain West Conference play. He was 4-8 in 2013, had two 7-6 seasons in 2014 and 2015 and digressed back to 5-7 in 2016. Polian also led the Wolf Pack to two bowl appearances in his four seasons at the helm, losing the New Orleans Bowl to Louisiana-Lafayette in 2014 and defeating Colorado State in the NOVA Home Loans Arizona Bowl in 2015.
Knuth was hired as athletics director in April of 2013, four months after Polian was hired at Nevada, so this will be his first football coaching hire in his time at Nevada.
“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,” Knuth said. “The support from those constituencies is vital to the success of building a championship program.”
Neil Patrick Healy can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and on Twitter @NP_Healy.