BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (AP) - Western Kentucky has fired second-year coach Mike Sanford following a 3-9 finish, the Hilltoppers' first losing season since 2010.
The school announced Sanford's firing on Sunday, a day after the 'Toppers beat Louisiana Tech 30-15 for their second consecutive victory in Conference USA play. Their strong finish followed six consecutive losses but wasn't enough to save Sanford's job as they finished 2-6 in the league.
WKU athletic director Todd Stewart thanked Sanford in a statement but said it was time to change leadership. Stewart added, "This was not an easy decision and was not made lightly."
The 36-year-old Sanford, a former Notre Dame offensive coordinator and assistant at Stanford and Boise State, was replaced Jeff Brohm, who left for Purdue after the 2016 season.
Sanford guided WKU to a 6-7 finish and the Cure Bowl last season.