UM Fires Athletic Director and Head Football Coach
A big shakeup in the Griz Nation today! Director of Athletics Jim O’Day and football coach Robin Pflugrad have been dismissed.
O’Day has served as Director of Athletics in Missoula since being appointed in June of 2005 while Pflugrad recently finished his second season with the Griz.
University President Royce Engstrom issued this statement this afternoon:
The University of Montana has determined not to renew the contracts of Athletics Director Jim O’Day and head football coach Robin Pflugrad. The University will announce an interim athletics director and interim head coach by the end of the week. Further details about the search for permanent replacements will be released as the process develops. We thank Jim and Robin for their dedicated service to the University, and we wish them the best.
Montana’s News Station is reporting that O’Day said in an email sent to the Grizzly Scholarship Association that, “while this comes as a shock to both Robin and myself, it is part of today’s global picture of intercollegiate athletics across the country. I realized that when I took the job.”
Pflugrad told The News Station’s Jill Valley and Derek Buerkle he was shocked about the firing, and that he’d not yet spoken to the team. Pflugrad wouldn’t comment on why he was fired. He said he will now consult with an attorney.
Meanwhile Griz football practice will be closed tomorrow and the team will return after spring break to their regularly scheduled practices.