Just one day after losing Bill Lazor to the pro ranks, Virginia moved quickly to hire Steve Fairchild, the program announced Wednesday.
Fairchild has 31 years of coaching experience at both the NFL and collegiate levels, including 16 seasons as an offensive coordinator. Most recently Fairchild was the senior offensive assistant for the San Diego Chargers. Before that, he was the head coach at Colorado State for four years.
“I am very excited to join the football program at the University of Virginia,” said Fairchild in a release. “I can’t wait to get started. I’m excited about the type of football team we can have and anxious to get to Charlottesville and get to work.”
“Steve Fairchild brings a wealth of experience to Virginia and when you look at the offenses of the teams he has coached, you see high achievement,” Virginia head coach Mike London said in the release. “Throughout his career you find Steve was a part of coaching staffs that have had tremendous offensive success and we are really fortunate to have him join our staff. Larry Lewis spoke very highly of Steve as they worked together at Colorado State.”
At Colorado State Fairchild also was the offensive coordinator from 1997-2000 and quarterbacks coach from 1993-1996. From 1993-2000 Colorado State won the Western Athletic Conference three times and the Mountain West Conference twice and was nationally ranked at various times during that span. In 1997, Colorado State finished No. 1 in the league in total and scoring offense.
Fairchild has also served stints in the college level at San Diego State and New Mexico, and has worked on staffs with the Buffalo Bills and St. Louis Rams in the NFL.
“Steve Fairchild is a coach that has been at a number of places and has had a great deal of success,” said Virginia Executive Associate Athletics Director Jon Oliver Wednesday. “He has been a head coach, he has worked in the NFL, and he has been a coordinator at the collegiate and professional levels. He is known as a solid recruiter and when he was at Colorado State they had the highest-ranked recruiting class in that institution’s history. We are excited to have Steve join the program and it is one more step to help us move forward.”
“We are in the process of implementing new systems on both sides of the ball,” Oliver said. “These types of changes take time and we will need to be patient as we seek to improve this football program.”
Fairchild is signed on at Virginia for two years and will receive an annual compensation totaling $450,000.