WESTWOOD—Jim Mora, head coach of the UCLA football team, was fired Sunday following the 23-28 loss to crosstown rivals USC on Saturday. According to a news release from UCLA, during his six seasons at UCLA, Mora compiled a 46-30 record, leading the Bruins to a pair of school record-tying 10-win seasons, winning the PAC-12 South in 2013 and taking the Bruins to four consecutive bowl games, including victories in the 2013 Sun Bowl and the 2014 Alamo Bowl.
Under Mora, Bruin teams produced four of the top five best total offensive season outputs during the school’s history. Twenty-five Bruins were selected in the NFL draft during Mora’s tenure. He leaves the position with one game left this season. Offensive coordinator Jedd Fisch will serve as interim head coach for the remainder of the season.
“Making a coaching change is never easy, but it’s an especially difficult decision when you know that a coach has given his all to our university,” said Director of Athletics Dan Guerrero Guerrero in a statement on Sunday. “Jim helped reestablish our football program, and was instrumental in so many ways in moving the program forward. While his first four seasons at UCLA were very successful, the past two seasons have not met expectations. We thank Jim and his family for his service to our school and his unquestionable commitment to our student-athletes.”
“Coaching student-athletes at UCLA has been the most rewarding experience of my career, and I know the future is bright for the program,” Mora said in a statement released Sunday afternoon on his birthday.
The Bruins declining performance has disgruntled fans. A GoFundMe page was created and $6,400 was raised to finance a mobile billboard and an airplane banner to display displeasure for the management of the football program, the Los Angeles Times reported.
According to Scout.com, UCLA is hoping to bring in former Oregon head coach Chip Kelly.
Former Bruin quarterback and NFL Hall of Famer Troy Aikman, Bruin alumnus Casey Wasserman and Senior Associate Athletic Director for External Relations Josh Rebholz will aid UCLA athletic director Dan Guerrero in the search for a new head coach.
The Bruins will play against the California Golden Bears on Friday, November 24 in the last game of the season.
“I am grateful for the willingness of Josh, Casey and Troy to help us recruit the very best coach to Westwood, as their advice and counsel will be indispensable,” said Guerrero. “We have no set timeline to make a hire but will move as expediently and comprehensively as possible. We will not comment on the search or candidates until we announce a hire, and I would remind our passionate supporters that speculation, rumors and innuendo are just that.”
Written By Vanessa Arrendondo and Donald Roberts