North Carolina State has fired head football coach Tom O’Brien after the Wolfpack finished their 2012 schedule with a 7-5 record.
Pack Pride reported the news via Twitter:
Tom O'Brien is out per NC State associate AD Chris Kingston— Pack Pride (@PackPride) November 25, 2012
The Wolfpacker then confirmed the news and reported O’Brien’s temporary replacement for the remainder of the season:
NC State has confirmed our earlier news on coach Tom O'Brien being released today, press conference at 5 p.m.— The Wolfpacker (@TheWolfpacker) November 25, 2012
Offensive coordinator Dana Bible will serve as interim coach for the bowl game.— The Wolfpacker (@TheWolfpacker) November 25, 2012
O’Brien was hired in 2007 after spending several successful seasons as the head coach at Boston College. His first few years with NC State brought little excitement, and he failed to lead his team to a winning record in each of his first three seasons.
But in 2010, the program started to turn around. In the past two seasons, the Wolfpack have been on the right side of .500 and won their bowl games.
While the Wolfpack seemed to be on an upward trend, their progression did not continue into this season. They went 4-4 in the ACC, and while they are bowl eligible, they were unable to build on the previous year’s success.
A massive upset over then-No. 3 Florida State will certainly be the highlight from this season for O’Brien, and likely one of the better moments throughout his tenure with the program. But it was ultimately not enough to save his job.
His discipline and conservative tendencies have brought moderate success to the team, but the Wolfpack have not grown into one of the ACC’s top programs, and there is not much evidence that O’Brien will be the man to lead them to that status.
O’Brien helped the program improve, but the move allows the team to head toward a more exciting brand of football that will hopefully lead toward challenging for an ACC title.