Pat Haden will retire from his position as athletic director at USC effective at the end of June, President C. L. Max Nikias announced in a statement Friday.
Haden will remain at the university until 2017 to guide the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum’s renovation.
“Pat has accomplished USC’s objectives here through his distinct blend of integrity, energy, wisdom, and character,” Nikias said. “During a time in which intercollegiate athletics has been undergoing unpredictable transformation at a national level, Pat developed and executed a blueprint for how athletics and academics can reinforce one another at an academically elite private research university with a public-minded mission.”
Haden has run the athletic program since 2010, overseeing a tumultuous period as a result of sanctions imposed on the football team. He infamously fired head football coach Lane Kiffin in 2013 and relieved Steve Sarkisian of his duties this past season following Sarkisian’s issues with alcohol addiction. Haden hired interim head coach Clay Helton on a full-time basis following a win over UCLA last season.
The 63-year old Haden had been battling health concerns the past few months. Last October, Haden collapsed on the sidelines prior to USC’s matchup against Notre Dame in South Bend and resigned from the College Football Playoff selection committee, explaining that his doctors advised him against the tough travel.
After serving as USC’s athletic director for just over five years, Haden leaves the athletics program in better shape than where it was when he took over in 2010 after succeeding Mike Garrett. During his tenure, USC has claimed 10 national championships. Haden also added two new sports in women’s lacrosse and beach volleyball.
“I’m not interested in the legacy of Pat Haden,” Haden told the Daily Trojan in October. “I want us to continue to improve, and I don’t feel like I need to be remembered for anything. Somebody’s going to take my place and continue to do this job and do it better than I — that’s the idea.”
This post was updated at 2:03 p.m.