Colorado's Mike MacIntyre was fired Sunday after the Buffaloes lost their sixth straight game.
MacIntyre is in his sixth season at Colorado, which suffered a 30-7 setback Saturday to Utah.
"I want to thank Mike for six seasons of hard work and dedication to the program, both on and off the field," athletic director Rick George said in a statement. "There's no doubt that the 2016 season was magical, and it appeared we were headed back to taking our place among the nation's elite. However, analyzing the direction of the program over the last two years, I felt this is the necessary time to make a change."
MacIntyre led Colorado to the Pac-12 championship game and earned AP College Football Coach of the Year honors in 2016.
He is 30-44 overall as the Buffaloes' coach.
George said he will name an interim coach for the final game against California in Berkeley. If Colorado wins, the team would be bowl eligible.
For the permanent job, George wants to hire a recognizable name with previous head-coaching experience, sources told ESPN's Adam Rittenberg. Possible candidates include former Oregon coach and Chicago Bears offensive coordinator Mark Helfrich, Fresno State coach Jeff Tedford, Boise State coach Bryan Harsin, and West Virginia coach Dana Holgorsen, who may be interested in making a move after the season.
MacIntyre's contract runs through 2021 and has $10.3 million remaining.