The college football San Diego State coach Rocky Long announced on Wednesday that he was retiring from his position. The Aztecs are coming off a 10-3 season with a win in the New Mexico Bowl.has nearly come to a stop, but not before throwing one more school into motion. In one of the more surprising moves,
Pete Thamel of Yahoo Sports previously reported that Long, a former defensive coordinator, had been shopping his services around to other programs in need of a DC.
Rocky Long has retired as SDSU football's head coach. He finished as the second-winningest coach in program history (81-38, .681), leading the Aztecs to three MW titles and bowl games in all nine seasons at the helm.— SDSU Football (@SDSUFootball) January 8, 2020
Release: https://t.co/YX35crcLRX pic.twitter.com/A2pdRrYTex
Bruce Feldman of The Athletic reported that the decision stemmed from San Diego State's administration wanting Long to consider staff changes, which Long was unwilling to do. Despite tremendous success with the Aztecs, Long's teams finished 112th or worse in scoring offense in each of the past two seasons.
In his place will step the man he replaced as Brady Hoke will take over the Aztecs program, the school also announced on Wednesday.
Since taking over for Hoke in 2011, Long has led the Aztecs to nine straight winning seasons and three Mountain West conference titles. San Diego State has enjoyed lots of recent success, too, with four 10-win seasons in the past five years, including back-to-back 11-win seasons in 2015 and '16. Overall, he leaves San Diego State No. 2 all time in wins at 81, just behind Don Coryell. He previously coached New Mexico from 1998 to 2008 with a 65-69 record.
Long has undoubtedly been one of the most underrated coaches of the past decade and he leaves the program with tremendous holes to fill. As for who will succeed him, Feldman reports, in a full circle move, that Hoke will be the next coach of the Aztecs. Hoke went 13-12 as the coach of the Aztecs from 2009 to 2010 before leaving to take the job at Michigan. Hoke then held jobs in the college ranks at Oregon and Tennessee before returning to San Diego State this past season under Long.