Stanford coach David Shaw resigned Saturday night after his 12th season at his alma mater ended with a 36-25 loss to BYU that dropped the Cardinal to 3-9.
Shaw, 50, led Stanford to five seasons of double-digit wins, three Pac-12 titles and Rose Bowl appearances in his first six years as head coach. He finished as the winningest coach in program history with a 96-54 record, and was considered one of the most respected coaches in the country.
Shaw was unusually late for his post-match press conference and said his decision only came in the last few days.
“It’s been great. It’s been a great run,” he said. “But it’s time for me to step aside. It’s time for the next group to come in.”
The fall in recent years has been drastic. The Cardinal are 14-28 over the past four seasons as the program has struggled to keep up in a rapidly changing college football landscape, with players transferring more freely and cashing in on name, image and similarity.
Stanford is 3-16 in Pac-12 play the last two seasons, including back-to-back losses against rival California.
“We’re not that far off,” Shaw said.
Shaw, a California native who played wide receiver for Stanford in the early 1990s, replaced Jim Harbaugh as head coach in 2011. He served as offensive coordinator under Harbaugh from 2007-2010.
Shaw spent nine seasons as an NFL assistant before joining Harbaugh’s staff at the University of San Diego and then following him to Stanford.
It was part of a remarkable program turnaround under Harbaugh, and then under his leadership Stanford became the Pac-12’s premier program with a physical style called “Intellectual Brutality.”
As the program declined, Shaw has remained staunchly loyal to his assistant coaches. Personnel has seen little change of late, with Shaw repeatedly saying he felt firing assistants was shifting the blame for the team’s failures from himself to others.
Stanford is a private school that doesn’t disclose contract terms with its coaches, so it’s unclear how many years Shaw had left on his deal.
He said he had no plans to look for another job.
“I’m not burned by any stretch of the imagination,” Shaw said. “I’m kind of anti-occupation right now.”
Report from The Associated Press.
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