UCLA names former Bruins RB DeShaun Foster new coach - ESPN
UCLA hired former star player and longtime assistant coach DeShaun Foster as the school's next head coach Monday.
Foster, who had taken a job as the Las Vegas Raiders' running backs coach earlier this month, is in the UCLA Hall of Fame as a player, served 10 years in various roles at the school and played seven seasons in the NFL. He emerged among a pool of 11 candidates interviewed by UCLA, many of whom were sitting head coaches.
Foster impressed the UCLA brass with his ability to lead and command a room. Per sources, school officials believe Foster can resonate in the Los Angeles market and emphasize recruiting and fundraising, part of the paradigm shift college football is undergoing in the era of name, image and likeness deals.
«This is a dream come true,» Foster said in a statement. «I always envisioned being a Bruin ever since I was young, and now being the head coach at my alma mater is such a surreal feeling, and I'm grateful for this opportunity. The foundation of this program will be built on discipline, respect and enthusiasm.»
Foster was also the overwhelming choice of the current players, who believe in him as a connecter and leader, sources said. The players «went crazy» upon hearing the news in a team meeting Monday morning, according to sources. Foster has worked under coaches Kliff Kingsbury, Jim Mora and Chip Kelly, and he played in a Super Bowl with the Carolina Panthers under John Fox. UCLA sees him as a modern CEO coach who can identify and develop players.
«We are looking for a coach with integrity, energy and passion; someone who is a great teacher, who develops young men, is a great recruiter and fully embraces the NIL landscape to help our student-athletes,» athletic director Martin Jarmond said