UCLA named DeShaun Foster as the school's head coach on Monday.
Foster, who took over the running backs coach job for the Las Vegas Raiders in recent weeks, is in the UCLA Hall of Fame as a player, is a longtime assistant coach and played seven seasons in the NFL. He emerged from a pool of 11 candidates interviewed by UCLA, several of whom were sitting head coaches.
“This is a dream come true,” Foster said in a statement. “I've always envisioned being a Bruin since I was little, and now being the head coach at my alma mater is a very surreal feeling, and I'm grateful for this opportunity. The foundation of this program will be built on discipline, respect and enthusiasm. These are exceptional young men, and I'm excited to hit the ground running.”
Foster impressed the UCLA officers with his ability to command and control the room. According to sources, school officials believe Foster can resonate in the Los Angeles market and emphasize recruiting and fundraising.
He consistently produced NFL running backs while he was an assistant coach at UCLA and was the overwhelming choice of current players. Foster worked under Kliff Kingsbury, Jim Mora, and Chip Kelly and played in the Super Bowl with the Carolina Panthers under John Fox. They see him as a modern executive coach who can identify and develop players.
“As we underwent a comprehensive search for our new head coach, Deshaun resonated from the beginning and throughout the entire process,” athletic director Martin Jarmond said in a statement. “We are looking for a coach with integrity, energy and passion; someone who is a great teacher, develops youth, is a great recruiter and fully embraces the NIL scene to help our student-athletes. DeShaun checks all of those boxes and then some.” He is a leader of men and a true Bruin. “I am excited to partner with him as we bring UCLA football into an exciting new era.”
Foster replaces Kelly, who left to become offensive coordinator at Ohio State last week.
“Beer enthusiast. Subtly charming alcohol junkie. Wannabe internet buff. Typical pop culture lover.”