Less than 24 hours after Jim Tomsula was relieved of his duties as head coach of the San Francisco 49ers, Jed York took the podium on Monday morning and made abundantly clear his high standards for the organization and how he plans to reach them.
"This season was frustrating on a number of levels," the franchise's CEO said to a room full of reporters and camera crews. "We took a step back from our ultimate goal of winning a Super Bowl.
"For that, I want to apologize to our fans and everybody who cares deeply about this team the way I do."
York repeatedly took accountability for the franchise's 5-11 record, which has ultimately led to a second head-coaching search in as many seasons.
"I hear the criticisms, loudly," he said.
York acknowledged the critical feedback he has heard through traditional media, social-media posts and interactions with the team's fan base, which he noted, included "planes flying over my head."
To that, York offered a firm response.
"The results from this season rest on my shoulders squarely," he said. "It wasn't good enough."
York announced that general manager Trent Baalke will be retained and lead the search for the franchise's next head coach.
"Trent has the skills to do this and get it done," York said. "He has the respect of his peers around the league."
In addition, York said that San Francisco's full coaching staff remains under contract and the team's next head coach will decide their futures with the organization.
According to York, the 49ers are looking for a coach with "leadership ability" and a "strategic vision" of how to get the team back to competing for Super Bowls.
The CEO did not divulge too much information about the necessary qualities. He said that it would be a "competitive offseason" in the NFL.
As it stands now, six teams are in the market for a new head coach.
York also shared that he spoke on the phone Monday morning with his uncle, former 49ers owner Eddie DeBartolo Jr.
When asked to relay the key takeaways from the conversation, York said, "don't settle" and "don't be afraid to make mistakes."
"I don't think there's anyone better to help me as a mentor, who has been there, than my uncle," York said.
The CEO was rather candid about the team's 5-11 record.
"A season like this ages you," York said. "I realize 2015 wasn't fun. It wasn't easy."
With that, however, Yok was firm in his belief that the 49ers have a bright future ahead of them. He directed his comments on the subject to the team's loyal fans.
"I understand how much passion you have for this team," York said. "You deserve more. And you're going to get more.
"Nobody wants this team to win more than I do."
York acknowledged that the 49ers have a short list of coaching candidates in mind. Whoever earns the job will inherit a franchise that holds the most draft picks in the NFL, beginning with the No. 7 overall selection, and is among the league leaders in salary-cap room.
"We have a clear understanding of what we want," York said.
As for timing, the 49ers will go through the full interview process and inform the team's fans and reporters when it is complete.
"This is going to be a very important offseason for us," York said. "I'm glad we have a lot of ammunition to build."
York said he was "absolutely" humbled by what transpired on the field in 2015.
"I truly am sorry that we had to go through this year," he said. "You have my word that I'm going to do everything to get us back."