Spermatogonial stem cells (SSCs) sustain spermatogenesis and fertility throughout adult male life. The conserved RNA-binding protein NANOS2 is essential for the maintenance of SSCs, but its targets and mechanisms of function are not fully understood. Here, we generated a fully functional epitope-tagged Nanos2 mouse allele and applied the highly stringent cross-linking and analysis of cDNAs to define NANOS2 RNA occupancy in SSC lines. NANOS2 recognizes the AUKAAWU consensus motif, mostly found in the 3′ untranslated region of defined messenger RNAs (mRNAs). We find that NANOS2 is a regulator of key signaling and metabolic pathways whose dosage or activity are known to be critical for SSC maintenance. NANOS2 interacts with components of CCR4-NOT deadenylase complex in SSC lines, and consequently, NANOS2 binding reduces the half-lives of target transcripts. In summary, NANOS2 contributes to SSC maintenance through the regulation of target mRNA stability and key self-renewal pathways.