TAHLEQUAH, Okla. (AP) — Northeastern State University has dismissed its football coach after six seasons.

Athletic director Tony Duckworth announced Sunday that a search is underway to replace coach Kenny Evans. The Tahlequah Daily Press reports Evans was fired after finishing the season 2-9.

Duckworth says assistant head coach John Murray will oversee the program but NSU aims to have a new coach in place within the next 60 days. Evans' record was 22-44 in six seasons at Northeastern State.

In a statement to the Muskogee Phoenix, Evans said he was caught off guard by the firing, which happened shortly after Northeastern State beat the University of Central Oklahoma on Saturday.

Evans says he's proud of his time at Northeastern State and he hopes the next coach "is given more of a fighting chance."