ESPN South Carolina coach Steve Spurrier told his players and coaches Monday night that he is retiring immediately, sources told ESPN.com, and the plan is for somebody else to coach the team the rest of the season. Spurrier’s retirement was first reported by SI.com. An interim coach will be named Wednesday, sources said. Spurrier, the Gamecocks’ all-time winningest coach, also informed South Carolina athletic director Ray Tanner of his decision to step down, sources said. This came after the Gamecocks lost their fourth straight SEC game Saturday to LSU. Spurrier, 70, was close to stepping down at the end of last season after the Gamecocks dipped to 7-6 on the heels of three straight 11-win seasons and three straight top-10 finishes nationally, but he elected to return. The Gamecocks have lost eight of their past nine SEC games dating to last season. They are 2-4 overall this season and 0-4 in the SEC, sitting seventh in the SEC East. One possibility to coach out the rest of the season for the Gamecocks is current defensive coordinator Jon Hoke, who is in his first season with the Gamecocks. He was brought in after South Carolina struggled on that side of the ball last season. Spurrier, fed up with the age questions and critics suggesting that his best coaching days were behind him, went on the offensive before this season began. “We were 11-2 and ranked fourth in the country this time a year ago, and nobody said a damn word about my age,” Spurrier said. “Now, a year later, I’m suddenly too old, and we’re on our way down. “I just want our fans to know that we’re going to have a good team and recognize that it’s our enemies saying these things about Spurrier being washed up and we’re not going to be heard from again. Gamecocks out there need to know that I’m going to be here five or six more years, and away we go.” Spurrier said then that he wasn’t going to let one down season derail the momentum the program had built since going to the SEC championship game in 2010. Before he arrived in 2005, South Carolina had only one season of double-digit wins in its history. “I’m smart enough to know when it’s time to let somebody else come in and do this, but I’m also smart enough to know that we’ve beaten Georgia four of the last five years, beaten Florida four of the last five years and beaten Clemson five of the last six years. We’re only 3-2 against Tennessee the last five years, and they won a couple of close ones against us, but they’ve lost 10 in a row to Florida,” Spurrier said in July. “So I’d say we’ve done OK and have a lot more we’re going to do.”
Breaking news out of the University of South Carolina, as head coach Steve Spurrier has retired effective immediately, leaving the program mid-season at the age of 70. Spurrier is one of the greatest college football coaches of all-time, he has always said that South Carolina would be his final job, and we wish him a long and relaxing retirement.