Fresno State Football: Jeff Tedford To Return As Bulldogs Head Coach, Per Reports
What’s old is new: Tedford will be back on the sidelines for the Fresno State Bulldogs after two years away from college football.
Almost a foregone conclusion.
After Kalen DeBoer’s departure for Washington, the Fresno State athletic department wasted little time setting in motion what everyone in the Central Valley had perceived as the obvious solution: Jeff Tedford is back as the Bulldogs’ head football coach and an official announcement could be made by tomorrow morning.
In news first broken by Yahoo Sports’s Pete Thamel and confirmed by KSEE-24’s Andrew Marden shortly thereafter, Tedford’s name was on everyone’s lips when rumors of DeBoer’s potential departure began to swirl at the conclusion of the regular season. While it was thought that Tedford might be enticed to follow DeBoer to Seattle with an analyst role, as he was with the Huskies in 2016, he chose instead to return to his alma mater and pick up where he left off two years ago.
In his first stint as Fresno State’s head coach, Tedford inherited one of the worst teams in program history after accepting the post in late 2016. He led a history-making turnaround in 2017, improving the Bulldogs by nine wins while securing a division title, a Hawaii Bowl victory over Houston, and a ten-win campaign in spite of dropping the Mountain West championship game against Boise State. The next year, Fresno State had one of its best seasons ever by finishing 12-2, claiming the conference title in a rematch against the Broncos, and defeating Arizona State in the Las Vegas Bowl to finish the year #18 in the Associated Press Poll.
2019 wasn’t quite as successful on the field as the Bulldogs finished just 4-8, though they were an unlucky 1-5 in games decided by eight points or fewer. More concerning, however, were health concerns that led Tedford to step away from coaching and turn the program over to DeBoer. He finished his first run with a record of 26-14 across three seasons, giving him an overall record of 108-71 in 14 years as a head coach for Fresno State and, before that, the California Golden Bears.