Veteran East Central University head coach Tim McCarty abruptly announced his resignation Monday, just days after his team suffered a 27-24 loss to archrival Southeastern.
McCarty has been the head coach at ECU for 11 years, including the last nine in a row. He began his career as the Tigers’ coach during the 2004 and 2005 seasons.
In 2009, McCarty’s Tigers went 0-11. He quickly turned things around and led the Tigers to .500 or better finishes over the next six years, until ECU struggled to a 1-10 record last year and 2-9 mark this season. He leaves with a 48-71 record while at East Central.
McCarty could not be reached for comment as of press time Monday. He did, however, release a statement through the school’s sports information department.
“It has been an honor to serve as this program’s head coach. I am very honored to have had this opportunity,” he said.
“I have really enjoyed being able to develop these young men, both on and off the field. The coaches who have worked with me have been a true blessing. Both the players (former and current) and coaches have been terrific,” he continued. “I want to thank East Central University’s faculty and staff for the support that was given, and the people in the Ada community who made us feel a part of it.”
McCarty informed his team of the decision Monday afternoon after meeting with ECU President Dr. Katricia Pierson and athletic director Dr. Jeff Williams.
During his time with ECU, McCarty produced five players who advanced to the National Football League, eight all-Americans and 108 all-conference selections.
The Tigers also claimed the 2010 Lone Star Conference North Division title and produced the most wins (eight) in a single season since 1993, when the team claimed its only national championship.
McCarty saw the 2014 team advance to the postseason for the first time since 1993 and its first bowl game since 1975, when ECU participated in the H.E.A.R.T. of Texas Bowl, where the Tigers were hammered by Texas A&M-Commerce 72-21.
Attempts by The Ada News to contact Williams were also unsuccessful before press time.
In the press release, Williams said one of McCarty’s best traits as a coach was the way he mentored his student-athletes.
“The impact he had on players’ lives during his time at ECU was very important. Tim’s passion for coaching and developing young players into men of character is evident, and his influence on their lives is immeasurable,” Williams said.
According to the release, McCarty also had a big impact on his players in the classroom.
The release said McCarty has raised academic expectations within the football program, and his players are now graduating at a higher rate and the team GPA has consistently increased since he returned in 2009. During his time at the Tigers’ helm, there have been 40 all-academic selections.
A national search for the Tigers’ next head coach will begin immediately, according to the release. In the interim, Williams has selected offensive coordinator Rashad Jackson to lead the team.