The University of Alabama announced the resignation of head baseball coach Mitch Gaspard on Monday after the 2016 season came to a close with a 32-26 record and no NCAA regional appearance. 

In seven seasons in charge of the Crimson Tide baseball program, Gaspard averaged 34 wins per season and earned NCAA tournament berths four times, but the team failed to make it each of the past two years.

Following the announcement, Gaspard released a letter to Alabama fans detailing his decision. Here's his explanation on how he came to the decision to step down as head coach.

Last Friday, after our elimination from the SEC Baseball Tournament, I sat down with our Director of Athletics, Bill Battle, and discussed the state of our baseball program. I focused on my feelings about our situation and where I am as in my coaching career and my primary role in life - as husband to my devoted wife, Kim, and the father of two beautiful young ladies, Brae and Paeton...

During that meeting, I expressed to Bill my desire to step down as head coach of the Crimson Tide baseball team. That decision was not something I arrived at during that meeting, but a decision that evolved very gradually over the last few weeks and months. Bill was supportive of me, and of my decision. But, more importantly, was primarily concerned with the well-being of everyone involved - myself, my family, my coaching staff, my support staff and, most of all, the players in the program and their families, along with the recruits and signees who have yet to formally join us in Tuscaloosa.

Decisions like this are never easy. I can say without any doubt, it is the most difficult decision I have ever had to make. But, I feel that the time is right - not only for me, but for this program. Our players, my staff, and my family have put everything we have into this program, and they deserve the best.

Gaspard went on to thank fans, administrators, coaches, players, and boosters for their support during his time at the Capstone.

Prior to getting the head coaching position in 2010, Gaspard spent nine years as an assistant coach for the Crimson Tide (1995-2001, 2008-09). In between that time, he was the head coach at Northwestern State

Alabama Athletic Director Bill Battle will begin the search for a new head coach. It will be just the fifth head coach in 46 years.

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