New England Patriots chief executive Sam Jankovich fired head coach Rod Rust Friday, following the worst season in club history - both on and off the field.
The Patriots finished 1-15, the worst record in the league, in Rust's first year as an NFL head coach. The team lost its final 14 games after several players were involved in the sexual harassment of a sports writer in their club locker room.Rust's firing was Jankovich's first major move since joining the Patriots last month. He said he made his decision after a three-hour morning meeting with Rust.
"I felt it was in the best interest at the end of the line of this organization to make a change," Jankovich told an afternoon news conference. "And I felt if we didn't make a change that I would not be serving this orgnization and this community like it should be served."
Jankovich named no possible replacements for Rust but said he would prefer someone with head coaching experience with an NFL team. He said a search would begin immediately and declined to comment about a successor.
Rust, 62, was named the Patriots' 10th head coach last Feb. 27, replacing Raymond Berry.