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Idaho’s Robb Akey becomes this year’s first coaching casualty

Graham Watson
Dr. Saturday

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(AP)

One of the most quotable coaches in college football is now without a team.

Idaho announced Sunday that it was parting ways with Robb Akey after more than five seasons with the program.

"The President (Duane Nellis) and I believe it is important to make this move now so we can immediately begin the process of hiring a new coach for the 2013 season," Athletic Director Rob Spear said in a statement. "We appreciate Coach Akey's enthusiasm and dedication to the University of Idaho but this is the right move at this time."

Enthusiasm is something that Akey exuded during his entire career with the Vandals despite a 20-50 record. Idaho was 1-7 this season and fresh off a 70-28 loss to Louisiana Tech on Saturday. That must have been a tipping point for an Idaho program that is about to hit a crossroads. With the Western Athletic Conference suspending football following the 2013 season and the Vandals are going independent — yet having a tough time filling their future schedules — finding a new coach willing to step into such a complicated situation might be difficult.

Akey had one winning season during his tenure — an 8-5 record that culminated in a 43-42 win over Bowling Green in the Humanitarian Bowl — but the program hadn't experienced a whole lot of success during its time in the FBS. It was especially difficult with Boise State being the class of the state with its national rankings and BCS bowl appearances.

Offensive coordinator Jason Gesser will finish the season, but Spear said the quest for a new coach would begin immediately.

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