REPORT: Tom O’Brien Fired; [Update]5pm Presser Notes and Video

[Update 5pm Presser]

Here’s some quick notes regarding the highlights (paraphrased) from what AD Debbie Yow had to say during today’s press conference (link to full video at bottom of notes)….

  • Differences in philosophy on recruiting definitely an issue with the decision for change.
  • All assistants are currently retained and depending upon new hire for HC, will have the opportunity to stay if appropriate (impression is that this will be up to new hire, of course).
  • Search committee was formed today, will meet for the first time tonite.
  • Disappointing results based on this year’s expectations definitely a major factor.
  • Ideal candidate will “not have a hint” of improprieties in their past and this will remove several prospective candidates.  Will also have passion and vision, and have a plan to make NC State a consistent top 25 football program.
  • Head coaching experience/proven track record would be a plus, but no HC experience is NOT necessarily a deal breaker for the right candidate. (Mentioned that she does not consider that Vandy coach James Franklin is a candidate at this point)
  • Player’s reactions were generally “respectful and quiet”.
  • Another factor in the decision is the loss of over 1000 season ticket holders, and the resulting loss of over $1.4M in revenue to the athletics dept.
  • DY stated that when/if TOB feels appropriate, he would be welcome to be a part of the dept. in some capacity.
  • Declined to give specifics on the money that will be spent on new HC contract.
  • Timetable: ASAP, but will take the time to do it right.  Current recruits are a concern, but getting right person is more important.  Current recruits/commits will be honored.  Have already contacted search firm.
  • Did NOT ask TOB to make staff changes.  Buyout is approx. $1.2M over four years.

Debbie Yow Press Conference Re: The Firing of Head Football Coach Tom O’Brien (


[Update 2:05pm] TOB statement from press release:

“I appreciate the opportunity to have coached at North Carolina State University and I feel that the program is in a better place now than when I started,” O’Brien said in a statement released by the school. “I’m proud of the young men that I have coached here, for their accomplishments on the field and in the classroom. Wolfpack football is as sound academically as it’s ever been with a [single year] APR of 990 to be reported this spring.  I appreciate all of my coaches and wish them the best and I look forward to life after football.”


Kinda Sounds like a de facto retirement.

[Original Entry]

Information still coming in, but Jeff Gravely (WRAL) is reporting that TOB has been “released” and this has been confirmed through Debbie Yow herself.  It is further being reported that TOB will NOT coach the Wolfpack in whichever bowl game in which it plays, but rather that Dana Bible will serve as interim Head Coach.

A Press conference is reportedly scheduled for 5pm.

O’Brien era ends at NC State (

Raleigh, N.C. — Less than 24 hours after a 27-10 win over Boston College to finish the 2012 season, North Carolina State head coach Tom O’Brien has been “released” of his duties, athletics director Debbie Yow said Sunday.

O’Brien has guided the Wolfpack to three consecutive bowl games and four in the past five seasons. NC State finished this season 7-5 overall and 4-4 in the ACC.

In six seasons at NC State, O’Brien was 40-35 but failed to crack the .500 mark in conference play, posting a 22-26 record. He came to Raleigh from Boston College in Dec. 2006 and signed a 7-year deal that was to pay him $1.1 million annually.

A press conference has been called for 5 p.m. Sunday to formally announce the move. It is expected that the search for a replacement will begin immediately.


O’Brien out at N.C. State (N&O – ACCNow Blog)

RALEIGH — Tom O’Brien has led N.C. State to three straight bowl games, and four in five seasons, but it wasn’t enough to save his job. O’Brien will not return for a seventh season, the school announced on Sunday.

O’Brien compiled a 40-35 record in six seasons with a 22-26 mark in the ACC. O’Brien’s contract runs through Dec. 2015 and he will be paid at least $1.2 million over the next three years.

The Wolfpack completed a 7-5 regular season on Saturday with a home win over Boston College and will play in a bowl game with offensive coordinator Dana Bible as the interim coach.

This will be the sixth coaching hire, including both major revenue sports, for N.C. State athletic director Debbie Yow, who was hired in July 2010.

The search for O’Brien’s replacement will begin immediately. Vanderbilt’s James Franklin is expected to be Yow’s top target. Yow once hired Franklin to succeed Ralph Friedgen at Maryland but that plan was scrapped when Yow left Maryland in 2010 and Friedgen was fired a year later.

We’ll continue to update this entry as more information becomes available.

For more discussion be sure to head here.

About Wufpacker

A 2nd generation alumnus and raised since birth to be irrationally dedicated to all things NC State. Class of '88 and '92.

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101 Responses to REPORT: Tom O’Brien Fired; [Update]5pm Presser Notes and Video

  1. rthomas44 12/01/2012 at 2:37 AM #

    Not a Fan— How many games have you coached? Logan speaks from experience ,if nothing else. State can spend money and hire whoever. Recruiting against the SEC is something else.

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