UC Riverside coach Spencer  resigns

Updated: March 13, 2007, 11:47 PM ET
Associated Press

RIVERSIDE, Calif. -- UC Riverside coach David Spencer resigned from the team Tuesday, citing health reasons.

"This has been the most difficult decision of my life," Spencer said in a statement. "I had waited my whole life to become a head coach, so to walk away from the job is painful."

Spencer had been granted a medical leave of absence in November for an undisclosed condition. His interim replacement was associate head coach Vonn Webb, who coached the Highlanders to a 7-24 record.

Athletics director Stan Morrison said the process for hiring a new coach would begin immediately.

"My foremost concern is for David's health and well-being," Morrison said. "Given the conversations that I have had with him, we both agree that it is time for him to move on and turn the reins over to a new coach."

Morrison said he expected Webb would apply for the position.

"Vonn Webb did an outstanding job under very challenging circumstances this past season," Morrison said.

Spencer was hired in March 2005 following a more than 30-year career as an assistant coach, including stints at Nevada, Long Beach State and USC.

Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press