ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Bob Davie has agreed to step aside as New Mexico’s coach at the end of the season, ending an uneven eight-season tenure with the Lobos.
Davie and athletic director Eddie Nuñez announced Monday that the former Notre Dame coach will step down after Saturday’s game against Utah State, calling it a mutual decision.
“After meeting with coach Davie this morning, we both agree that the time has come for a new direction for our football program," Nuñez said in a statement. "I'm appreciative of the work that coach Davie has done at UNM."
New Mexico is 2-9 this season and has lost its last eight games.
Davie is 35-63 at New Mexico but twice guided the Lobos to bowl games and earned New Mexico’s first bowl victory in 10 years.
“In stepping aside, I'm proud of what we accomplished at UNM, but we are all disappointed that we have not been able to sustain the success that we achieved and all desire," Davie said in a statement. "My family and I will be forever grateful to UNM for giving me the opportunity to coach again after being at ESPN for 10 years."
Although the team went to back-to-back bowls in 2015 and 2016, the Lobos went 3-9 in each of the next two seasons.
This season began with a scare as Davie collapsed on the field moments after a season-opening victory against Sam Houston State on Aug. 31.
He was hospitalized for several days with a still-undisclosed ailment. He missed the team’s ensuing two games, including a return to Notre Dame, which the Lobos lost 66-14 while he watched on television from Albuquerque.
Three weeks ago, junior defensive end Nahje Flowers died by suicide, causing New Mexico’s game with Air Force to be postponed two weeks.
When he was hired in November of 2011, Davie inherited a team that had gone 3-37 in its previous 40 games.
His 35 wins are third most in program history and after Saturday, he will have coached 99 games, second most in school history.
Davie was also suspended for 30 days in the spring of 2018 because of alleged physical abuse of players.