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Western Kentucky Fires Coach Mike Sanford After 3-9 Season

Western Kentucky University has fired second-year coach Mike Sanford following a 3-9 finish to the Hilltoppers' first losing season since 2010.

The school announced Sanford's departure on Sunday, a day after the 'Toppers beat Louisiana Tech 30-15 for their second consecutive victory in Conference USA play. Their strong finish followed six consecutive losses but wasn't enough to save Sanford's job as they finished 2-6 in the league.

WKU athletic director Todd Stewart thanked Sanford in a statement but said it was time to change leadership. Stewart added, "This was not an easy decision and was not made lightly."

The 36-year-old Sanford, a former Notre Dame offensive coordinator and assistant at Stanford and Boise State, replaced Jeff Brohm, who left for Purdue after the 2016 season.

Sanford guided WKU to a 6-7 finish and the Cure Bowl last season.

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