And here we thought the latest spinning of the coaching carousel had come to an end.
Less two weeks ahead of National Signing Day, New Mexico State has lost its head coach as DeWayne Walker has left the Aggies for the Jacksonville Jaguars. The school confirmed in a release that Walker resigned to take a defensive backs post with the NFL club.
A five p.m. ET press conference has been scheduled by NMSU to discuss the abrupt development.
“I really appreciate the opportunity that Dr. Boston and New Mexico State gave me to be a division I head football coach,” Walker said in a statement released through the school. “Unfortunately, I did not get the program as far as I would have liked from a wins and losses standpoint. But, we do have a better locker room, better kids and a better foundation for the program moving forward.
“There are a lot of people that I want to thank for their support and will be reaching out to those individuals in the coming days. They have helped me in moving the program forward. I am excited about starting a new chapter in my coaching career, as is my family. I wish New Mexico State great success in the future and wish everyone the best. Go Aggies!”
Walker recently completed his fourth season with the Aggies, leaving the football program with a 10-40 career mark. Included in that total was a 1-11 record in 2012.
As for a potential reason behind the abrupt departure, the Las Cruces Sun wrote earlier this week that “Walker spoke frequently… of a program that wasn’t well-enough supported to put wins in the record books, making it unfair to judge his coaching acumen entirely on his win-loss standing.”
It’s expected that Doug Martin, who was hired late last week to serve as Walker’s offensive coordinator, will at least be named interim head coach at the press conference later on this afternoon.
Walker’s departure means 31 FBS football programs — including Georgia State, which is moving up from the FCS level this season — will have a different head coach on the sidelines in 2013 than they did in 2012.
UPDATED 5:41 p.m. ET: New Mexico State confirmed that Doug Martin has been named interim head coach. Martin spent seven years (2004-10) in the same position at Kent State.
There’s been no word yet on whether a “national” search will be launched, or if Martin will eventually have the interim title dropped.