Less than eight months after signing a two-year extension, UConn football head coach Bob Diaco has been relieved of head coaching duties effective Jan. 2, 2017 according to a statement from the University.
“I believe a new leader for our program and student-athletes is needed to build long-term success,” UConn athletic director David Benedict said in a statement. “I am grateful to Coach Diaco and his staff for their hard work and the integrity with which they ran the program and certainly wish them future success.”
In three seasons under Diaco, UConn was 11-26, including a 6-18 mark in American Athletic Conference play. UConn finished 3-9 in 2016 after a 2-1 start, losing their last four games by a combined score of 130-16. That disappointing season came on the heels of an encouraging improvement in 2015, as the Huskies finished with a 6-7 record to claim their first bowl berth since 2010.
By firing Diaco Jan. 2, UConn will owe Diaco $3.4 million instead of the $5 million owed to him if he was fired prior to the end of 2016. According to UConn, new head coaching options will be begin being reviewed immediately.
“This is obviously not the way I had hoped things would turn out, but I appreciate having had the opportunity to be here at UConn,” Diaco said in a statement. “I thank the administration, staff and fans of the UConn football program for their passion and support over these three years. Most importantly, I want to say how much I love the players on this team and will be rooting for their success. I know that there are great things to come for all of them.”
The Huskies have landed 12 hard commits from the class of 2017, according to 247Sports. Their class is ranked 12th in the American, and 108th nationally.
Associate Sports Editor Tyler Keating contributed to this report.