Sources: Niners to name Tomsula as new HC

Updated: January 14, 2015, 6:07 PM ET

ESPN.com news services

The San Francisco 49ers will promote defensive line coach Jim Tomsula to head coach, sources told ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter.

The 46-year-old Tomsula, who has spent the past eight years as San Francisco’s defensive line coach, would replace Jim Harbaugh, who parted ways with the Niners on Dec. 28 to become the new coach at the University of Michigan.

The Niners missed the playoffs for the first time under Harbaugh by going 8-8 this season en route to a disappointing third-place finish in the NFC West.

Harbaugh’s first three seasons in San Francisco were marked by overwhelming success, as the Niners appeared in the NFC Championship Game three straight times and reached Super Bowl XLVII.

But after getting off to a 7-4 start this season, San Francisco struggled down the stretch, losing four of its final five games.

Harbaugh’s fourth season with the Niners was marred by the shortcomings of quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who regressed in his second full year as the starter, the lengthy absence of star pass-rusher Aldon Smith, who was suspended nine games for multiple violations of the NFL’s personal conduct policy, and the off-field troubles of defensive lineman Ray McDonald, who was released last month following an allegation of sexual assault.


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