Jim Tomsula's short stint as head coach for the San Francisco 49ers is finally over as the organization confirmed that he is relieved of his duties following the team's final game of the season. Before this, multiple reports indicated that the Niners are set to sack the coach but plan on retaining general manager Trent Baalke.
San Francisco completed the campaign with a 19-16 overtime victory against the St. Louis Rams on Sunday. However, it was not enough to save Tomsula as the 49ers announced less than two hours after the game that he had been sacked.
"Jimmy has been a valuable member of the 49ers organization for the last nine years. We all know he is a man of high character, and his contributions on the field and in our community have always been greatly appreciated," CEO Jed York said. "This entire organization is proud and grateful to have worked so closely alongside Jimmy. We all wish him and his family great success in the future."
San Francisco promoted Tomsula as head coach shortly after they finished with an 8-8 record last season and lost four of their final five games. He replaced Jim Harbaugh, who moved on to coach the University of Michigan, his alma mater.
Harbough, who previously said that his separation from San Francisco was not mutual, sent out a cryptic tweet (see below) a few hours after news of Tomsula's termination have surfaced.
Do not be deceived. You will reap what you sow.
— Coach Harbaugh (@CoachJim4UM) January 4, 2016
A solid relationship between Jed York and Trent Baalke is expected to give the latter a sixth season as general manager along with a third head-coaching hire. According to ProFootBallTalk, former 49ers offensive coordinator Mike Holmgren is a possible replacement for Tomsula. He has continuously expressed interest in the job and "has the kind of track record that could make the fan base believe that things will turn around."
Meanwhile, Australian running back Jarryd Hayne's historic season in San Francisco has somehow ended with a fizzle, likely because of the impact of Tomsula's sacking. It was the former head coach who gave Hayne his first taste of NFL action during the season.
Hayne remained on the sideline throughout much of the team's 19-16 overtime win over the Rams at Levi's Stadium. The team opted to play Mike Davis, DuJuan Harris, and Kendall Gaskins at running back. Davis has just returned after being out due to a hand injury; he shared much of the workload with Harris. Tomsula did use Hayne on the special teams defensive unit where he made a tackle late in the game's fourth quarter.
Nevertheless, the 27-year-old running back was ecstatic that he had completed his dream of joining the 49ers and went against the odds playing in eight games. When asked about his lack of time on the field, Hayne replied, "It is what it is. Overall, the year what I've had and to be here and part of the team has been incredible and more than what I could have imagined."