Dick Tomey named football coach

Dick Tomey, currently the assistant head coach and defensive ends coach for the nationally-ranked 2005 Rose Bowl participant University of Texas, has accepted the San José State head football coaching position.

December 29, 2004

Dick Tomey takes over at SJSU after Saturday's Rose Bowl game between Texas and Michigan.

(San Jose,CA)** Dick Tomey, currently the assistant head coach and defensive ends coach for the nationally-ranked 2005 Rose Bowl participant University of Texas, has accepted the San José State University football head coaching position. Tom Bowen, the director of athletics at San Jose State, will make the announcement at a December 29 press conference.

With 24 seasons as a successful major college football head coach, Tomey is taking over the reins of his third program. He was the head coach at the University of Hawaii from 1977 through 1986 and the University of Arizona from 1987 through 2000. The new San Jose State coach left both universities as each school's all-time leader in NCAA Division I-A coaching victories. Tomey, College Football Hall of Fame members George Welsh of Virginia and Navy, and the late Paul "Bear" Bryant while at Kentucky and Alabama are the only Division I-A coaches to lead multiple schools in all-time major college coaching wins.

His 158-110-7 overall major college head coaching record will place him among the top-10 active Division I-A head coaches for career victories and games coached when he takes the field leading the Spartans for the first time on September 3, 2005 in Spartan Stadium against Eastern Washington University. A two-time conference "Coach of the Year," he posted a 63-46-3 win-loss record at Hawaii and a 95-64-4 mark at Arizona.


"Dick Tomey is the most experienced candidate with a Division I-A background who sought our football coaching position. In all of our discussions during the hiring process, Dick Tomey was described as a person with boundless positive energy, possessing an engaging leadership style, and demonstrating a genuine love for his student-athletes," says athletics director Bowen about Tomey who accepted a four-year agreement. "He's been associated with some of the most prominent names in college football for the last 40 years and has parlayed all his relationships into one of the game's most successful coaching careers. We are very fortunate that Dick Tomey wants to be San Jose State University's new coach."


He was the first coach at Hawaii to lead the Rainbows to an in-season national ranking when the 1981 team cracked the top-20 in the Associated Press and United Press International polls. The 1981 Western Athletic Conference "Coach of the Year" also produced Hawaii's first Associated Press first-team All-America player in defensive lineman Al Noga, a 1986 selection. Home attendance, which was 20,236 in 1976, the season prior to his arrival, grew to 44,651 in 1986 his final year at Hawaii.

Moving to Arizona in 1987, his Wildcat teams appeared in seven post-season bowls winning the 1989 Copper, 1994 Fiesta, 1997 Insight.com and 1998 Culligan Holiday Bowls. Arizona had won just one bowl game, the 1986 Aloha Bowl, in 85 seasons of football prior to his arrival. The 1994 Fiesta Bowl win over then-No. 10 Miami (Fla.), 29-0, was the first time in the history of that bowl game a winning team posted a shutout victory. The 1998 Culligan Holiday Bowl triumph was a 23-20 victory over then-14th-ranked Nebraska. Tomey's Wildcats were the only program to beat both Miami (Fla.) and Nebraska in bowl games in the decade of the ‘90's.

His 1993 and 1998 Arizona teams were the first two at the school to finish as a consensus top-10 program in the final national polls. The 1993 team that had a 10-2 win-loss record was ninth in USA Today coaches and 10th in the Associated Press final polls. The 1998 Wildcats were fourth in both polls' final balloting. The 1989 (25th) and 1994 (20th) Arizona teams also finished the season nationally ranked.

At Arizona, the 1992 Pacific-10 "Coach of the Year" coached five National Football League first-round draft choices, 20 All-Americans and 43 first-team All-Pacific-10 selections. His defensive units trademarked the "Desert Swarm" nickname in the early 1990's leading the nation in scoring defense in 1992 and rushing defense in 1993.


"Number one, I am a competitor. I believe San Jose State University can be successful in college football. I've always felt San Jose State had tremendous possibilities. The opportunity to be the head coach is really appealing and compelling," says Tomey, who describes the lasting relationships he builds with his players as a primary factor for his lengthy coaching career. "With the commitment from athletics director Tom Bowen and President Don Kassing, the pieces are in place for an outstanding program and I want to be a part of it.

"My whole coaching career is built around recruiting in California. It will be fun to get back here and be in this environment again. My wife and I lived in San Jose last year (while working for the 49ers) and we thoroughly enjoyed the community."


"Dick Tomey is a seasoned head coach who has had wonderful success. He has a strong history with the total student-athlete concept. He's been acknowledged by the faculty at a Research I university, the University of Arizona, with a ‘Provost's Award.' We're very pleased Dick Tomey is returning to San Jose and joining the San Jose State University family," says Interim President Don Kassing.


The native of Bloomington, Ind., is a 1960 graduate of DePauw University where he played football and baseball. He began his coaching career in 1962 at Miami University (Ohio) as a graduate assistant coach under Johnny Pont and Bo Schembechler. Tomey was an assistant coach at Northern Illinois University (1964), Davidson College (1965-66), the University of Kansas (1967-70) and UCLA (1971-76). While at Kansas and UCLA, he worked for Pepper Rodgers, San Jose State University graduate and Super Bowl winning coach Dick Vermeil and current San Francisco 49ers general manager Terry Donahue.

In addition to his conference "Coach of the Year" honors, the new San Jose State football coach was inducted into the DePauw University Hall of Fame in 1994. Tomey was a1999 recipient of a "Provost Award" as the University of Arizona's "Outstanding Teacher" – the only coach in school history to be so honored by the university faculty.


After leaving the University of Arizona, he was a broadcast analyst for University of Hawaii telecasts in 2001 and 2002. He returned to coaching in 2003 as a San Francisco 49ers defensive assistant coach.

Completing his 41st year of coaching with the 2005 Rose Bowl, Tomey help shape the University of Texas one of the nation's top defensive units during the 2004 regular season. Currently, the Longhorns, with 10-1 record, are ranked in the top-30 nationally or higher in every major defensive statistical category and were the only team in the regular season to limit the University of Oklahoma to less than 20 points.

"I want to express how indebted I am to the University of Texas, (head coach) Mack Brown and (athletics director) DeLoss Dodd for giving me the opportunity to be a Longhorn in 2004," says the new San Jose State football coach. Tomey replaces Fitz Hill who posted a 14-33 win-loss record during the 2001 through 2004 seasons.


Tomey's wife, Nanci Kincaid, is a contemporary fiction author. Her book titles include "Balls," "Pretending the Bed is a Raft," "Crossing Blood," and "Verbena." "As Hot as it Was You Ought to Thank Me" is set for release in February 2005.


San Jose State University – Dick Tomey named football head coach.

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