Don Treadwell’s coaching tenure at his alma mater ended with a loss to his close friend Dan Enos.
Treadwell was dismissed as the coach at Miami (Ohio) on Sunday – a day after the RedHawks dropped to 0-5 this season with a 21-9 loss to Central Michigan at home in their Mid-American Conference opener in what was a matchup of struggling teams.
Treadwell, who left his job as Michigan State’s offensive coordinator to take the Miami job in December 2010, was in his third season coaching the RedHawks and finishes 8-21. He is the third coach in major college football to be fired this season, joining USC’s Lane Kiffin and UConn’s Paul Pasqualoni.
“I have decided to make a change in our football leadership now in hopes of seeing improved performance for the rest of the season,” Miami director of athletics David Sayler said in a released statement from the school. “Miami University takes the interest of our student-athletes seriously and this decision is the result of the past nine months since I’ve been on the job.
“Don is a great man, nobody can disagree with that, but I felt a change was needed immediately in the direction of the program. That direction involves making our program relevant again and restoring pride that should accompany being the all-time winningest program in the MAC.”
Miami went 4-8 in each of its two full seasons under Treadwell. Their 0-5 start this year included losses by an average of 36 points to Illinois, Marshall and Kentucky.
Treadwell had two different stints on MSU’s coaching staff, serving as Mark Dantonio’s offensive coordinator from 2007-2010. He was the Spartans’ receivers coach from 2000-2002.
Dantonio, who also had Treadwell serve as his offensive coordinator when he was head coach at Cincinnati, was saddened to hear the news of his good friend being let go.
“I think we live in a fickle society and it’s all about winning,” Dantonio said. “I think that coach Treadwell is extremely disciplined, strong leader and he’s extremely caring. He’s resilient, he’s a man of faith, he has all the attributes of being a leader for his football team. That’s the one guy I know that’s had this happen and had a personal relationship with. You don’t strengthen your football team when you do that, you weaken it. You leave a hole in the players’ hearts, you disable them in some respects. What’s sad now is the team will be down two coaches. The players will suffer now and the discipline from within the team will erode. When you make a decision like that, it affects a lot more people. Coaches spend their entire day, 365 a year, working on trying to make things work. Some people see the results on the field, maybe they don’t see the results in the classroom, maybe they don’t see the results and the type of people they have in the community.
“I know coach Treadwell after being with him for seven years as our offensive coordinator, the people of Michigan State know coach Treadwell and the fact that he was our interim coach when I was unable to do so. I think he did a tremendous job, not just with the X and Os, but with the controlling of people and the way he handled himself. It’s sad when you see a statement that leads to the effect that it’s just concerned about making the team better and you lose the person that’s supposed to be able to do that. I know that the players respect him. I’ve seen how our players have handled him, the long-term respect that he’s had. It’s sad. It leaves a void in leadership at Miami in my respect. I’m sure the AD won’t be the football coach this week.”
Treadwell is the father of MSU senior offensive lineman Blake Treadwell. His other son Spencer Treadwell is a sophomore running back at Miami.