Herm Edwards is the second Power Five coach to be fired in as many weeks.
The state of Arizona announced on Sunday that it was saying goodbye to Edwards after the Sun Devils lost 30-21 to Eastern Michigan on Saturday night. ASU’s loss fell to 1-2 after the Sun Devils lost to Oklahoma State in Week 2.
“We have made the decision to change the direction of our football program with immediate effect,” Arizona state sports director Ray Anderson said in a statement. By mutual agreement, Coach Edwards and I have decided that he will step down from his duties as our head coach. At the heart of this is doing what is best for our current team, our employees and the university. I understand the frustrations out there. We have to do better and that starts with our decision today.”
Per Rivals’ Devils Digest, running backs coach Shaun Aguano will be the team’s interim coach. Just one week before the state of Arizona made its decision to fire Edwards, Nebraska announced that Scott Frost was absent as head coach after a home loss to Georgia Southern.
The state of Arizona has finished above .500 in each of Edwards’ three full seasons with the team, but has been the subject of an off-season NCAA investigation into recruiting violations after ASU allegedly hosted recruits on campus. during NCAA-mandated recruiting dead periods. Five assistant coaches left during the investigation, including defensive coordinator and former NFL linebacker Antonio Pierce.
The Sun Devils also saw a large number of players leave the program after the 2021 season, including now-starting LSU quarterback Jayden Daniels. The team’s new quarterback is Florida transfer Emory Jones.
Edwards, 68, was hired from Arizona State for the 2018 season by Anderson, a former Edwards agent. The former NFL coach came to ASU with no college head coaching experience and last coached at the college level in 1989, when he spent his third and final season as the San Jose State defensive back coach.
Arizona State went 46-26 during Edwards’ tenure and was 8-5 in both 2019 and 2021. Edwards was brought in to replace Todd Graham after ASU failed to win more than seven games in Graham’s last three seasons with the team . But ASU also had two seasons with 10 wins under Graham – something the school never came close with Edwards as head coach.
Edwards’ future turned dark in the hours after Eastern Michigan’s loss, when school president Michael Crow said the school would evaluate its football program in the wake of the defeat.
Before coming to the state of Arizona, Edwards worked as an analyst with ESPN since his NFL coaching career ended in 2008. Edwards was the coach of the New York Jets from 2001-05 and the coach of the Kansas City Chiefs from 2006-08. The Jets were 39-41 in Edwards’ five seasons and made it to the playoffs in three seasons. The Chiefs were 9-7 in Edwards’ first year, but won a total of six games in his last two seasons, dropping Edwards’ NFL career coaching record to 54-74.