ASU official: Erickson out as Sun Devils coach

Dennis Erickson is out as Arizona State coach, a university

official told The Associated Press, after another season in which

the results didn’t meet the expectations for the Sun Devils.

The official spoke on the condition of anonymity on Sunday

because details of Erickson’s departure have not been

finalized.

Erickson will meet with athletic director Lisa Love as early as

Monday and, at 64, could be allowed to retire rather than be fired.

Erickson could still coach in whatever bowl game the Sun Devils

play in.

Erickson’s job came into jeopardy after Arizona State lost its

final four games following a 6-2 start, knocking the Sun Devils

from contention to play in the inaugural Pac-12 championship game

next Friday. He was 31-30 in five seasons in the desert.

Erickson won a pair of national titles with Miami and had stops

at Oregon State and Idaho before arriving in Tempe in 2007. He had

an impressive start in the desert, named the Pac-10 coach of the

year after leading the Sun Devils to the Holiday Bowl and their

first 10-win season in nine years.

That turned out to be the highlight of his tenure.

Arizona State won no more than six games the next three years,

ineligible for a bowl last season because two of its games were

against Football Championship Subdivision schools.

Love opted to stick with Erickson despite three straight shaky

seasons and the Sun Devils went into this year with high

expectations, returning nearly every starter on both sides of the

ball.

Arizona State looked good early, taking control of the Pac-12

South after its first eight games, then went into a tailspin.

After becoming bowl eligible for the first time in four years

with a win over Colorado on Oct. 29, the Sun Devils lost their grip

on the South with a loss to UCLA the next week, and couldn’t make

up ground despite the Bruins’ lackluster finish.

The final blows for Erickson’s chances of keeping his job came

with a disappointing home loss to rival Arizona, which had fired

its coach and had won just two games at that point, followed by

Friday’s 47-39 loss to California at home.

”I don’t know that I have ever been through a month like

this,” Erickson said after the loss to Cal. ”We felt that we had

a chance to have a great year, then you lose four in a row and just

end up with a very, very average year.”