San Jose, Calif.-----Following the completion of his fifth season as San Jose State University's football head coach on December 5, Dick Tomey will retire from coaching. His retirement will be effective January 15, 2010. The 71-year-old head coach with 46 years in the coaching profession made the announcement at the university's weekly football press conference.
Since Tomey took the Spartans' reins in December 2004, the team won the 2006 inaugural New Mexico Bowl, was bowl-eligible twice (2006, 2008), had the third best win-loss record in the Western Athletic Conference over a 39-game span from the end of 2005 through the 2008 season (22-17) and produced a .500 win-loss percentage in conference road games from 2006 to 2008. The Spartans also picked up their first win over a Pacific-10 Conference opponent, Stanford, in six years in 2006 and first victory in 31 years over San Diego State that same season. With three games remaining in 2009, Tomey has a 24-33 win-loss record as San Jose State's head coach.
Overall, Tomey is completing a 29-year college football head-coaching career and has a current coaching record of 182-143-7. A consistent winner, his teams never experienced two straight losing seasons.
All 332 games he has coached were with Division I-A or Football Bowl Subdivision schools - Hawaii (1977-1986), Arizona (1987-2000) and San Jose State (2005-2009). Tomey is the only coach who ranks in the top-10 in the Western Athletic Conference and Pacific-10 Conference for conference coaching victories.
"This is a big-picture decision made jointly by me and my wife Nanci (Kincaid) in our best interests and in the best interests of San Jose State University. The reason I've coached this long is because the relationships with the players and the coaches are the most gratifying part of the job for me," says Tomey who insists the team's early December finish necessitates today's announcement about retiring and paving the way for San Jose State to begin a search for its next coach. "Nanci and I will return to Hawaii and look forward to spending more time with each other and our family.
"I've been fortunate to have three head coaching jobs in the highest level of college football. The one here at San Jose State may be the most rewarding. We've come so far and accomplished so much in five years. Terrific young men took a leap of faith when we started in 2005 and put the program back on a sturdy foundation for future San Jose State teams."
He is among the top active Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) coaches for bowl victories and post-season winning percentage (.625). In each of his three head coaching jobs, he led teams to nine-win seasons at least once.
The highly-respected Tomey is the current president of the 10,000-plus member American Football Coaches Association. Thirty-seven of his former assistants are coaching in major college or professional football. Five of them, Rich Ellerson (Army), Pat Hill (Fresno State), June Jones ((SMU), Ron McBride (Weber State) and Tom Williams (Yale) are NCAA Division I head coaches. A number of his former players also are in the football coaching profession.
Besides his three college head coaching jobs, Tomey was an assistant coach at Texas (2004), UCLA (1971-76), Kansas (1967-1970), Davidson (1965-66) and Northern Illinois (1964). He began his coaching career in 1962 as a graduate assistant at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. Tomey also worked as a National Football League assistant coach for the San Francisco 49ers in 2003.
"Dick Tomey deserves our eternal gratitude and heartfelt thanks for resurrecting the San Jose State football program. The program had limited success in competition; was caught in the firestorm of national academic reform for all college student-athletes; and was not a first-priority for our students, alumni and fans," says San Jose State director of athletics Tom Bowen.
"Dick Tomey changed the culture of San Jose State football. The team competed, battled and it won. The academic performance of our football team as measured by today's standard is much improved and we are graduating student-athletes at a higher rate than ever before. Our attendance improved significantly during his coaching tenure - so much so that our home, Spartan Stadium, became a destination for network television games."
The Spartans have three games remaining, home contests with Hawaii on November 21 and New Mexico State on November 28 and a trip to Louisiana Tech on December 5, with Tomey as head coach.
Bowen announced a search for Tomey's successor is underway. His goal is to name the next San Jose State football coach before the end of the fall semester.
Dick Tomey facts
Born: June 20, 1938 in Bloomington, Ind.
Head coaching record: 182-143-7, 28+ seasons
5 teams ranked in the top-25 at the end of a season in a nationally-recognized poll (1989, 25th, writers; 1993, 9th coaches, 10th writers; 1994, 20th; 1997 - 18th; 1998 - 4th)
1981 Western Athletic Conference and 1992 Pacific-10 Conference Coach of the Year