Nick Quartaro has resigned from Kansas University's football coaching staff, it was announced Friday afternoon.
KU's offensive coordinator for the past five seasons, Quartaro said in a statement that he plans to leave coaching, though no specifics were given. He was unavailable for comment Friday evening.
"After 30 years of football being the central point of my work, I look forward to utilizing a lot of the same skills and attributes to help me in a new career path," Quartaro said in a press release.
In charge of the offense in general and the quarterback in particular, Quartaro's success at Kansas came and went. The Jayhawks had a potent offense in 2002 and 2003 behind quarterback Bill Whittemore, struggled in 2004 and part of 2005 with a seemingly weekly quarterback controversy, then reacquired some success in 2006 despite personnel issues at the quarterback position.
Three different quarterbacks - Kerry Meier, Adam Barmann and Todd Reesing - saw significant action in '06 with mixed results. Still, Kansas averaged 29 points per game this season in finishing 6-6. Seven times, the Jayhawks broke the 30-point plateau.
If Quartaro does indeed leave coaching, it will cap a 30-year career that started at Hobart College in New York in 1977. Quartaro was a kicker at Iowa before that, and his coaching ascension progressed in the 1980s with stops at Northwestern, Drake and Kansas State. He later became head coach at Fordham before his final two stops as an assistant at Iowa State and Kansas.
At K-State, Quartaro was working as an assistant when head coach Bill Snyder hired an unknown aide named Mark Mangino. When Mangino became KU's head coach in 2002, he hired Quartaro away from Iowa State and made him offensive coordinator.
Along with defensive coordinator Bill Young - also hired in 2002 - the top three rungs of KU's coaching ladder stayed in tact until Friday's announcement. Now, only three members of Mangino's original coaching staff at KU remain - Young, tight-ends coach Brandon Blaney and co-defensive coordinator Clint Bowen, who actually preceded Mangino at KU.
"Nick has been a dedicated and important member of our coaching staff since his arrival at Kansas," Mangino said in the release. "He's played a key role in the development of our program."
No word yet on potential replacements, though the process could be quick with recruiting season heating up and current players returning from winter break in about two weeks. Spring practices will start in March.
"The respect for the Jayhawk football program among the Big 12 schools, as well as on a national level, has grown tremendously," Quartaro said in the release. "With the leadership in place and facility improvements in the works, the program will continue to climb to greater heights."