Jeebus, is this bad? It sounds bad.
Butch Davis, who led Florida International to three bowl games and the biggest win in school history against Miami in 2019, will not return as the Panthers’ coach, he told The Action Network.
Davis’ contract expires on Dec. 15. Davis’ agent had asked FIU for a one-year extension, but FIU officials would not extend his deal.
Before Davis arrived at FIU in 2017, the Panthers had five consecutive losing seasons and had only been to two bowl games in school history. FIU had only two winning seasons in 13 years before Davis’ arrival.
However, Davis immediately turned around the program, with back-to-back winning seasons. In his first three seasons, FIU was 23-16, the best three-year mark in school history.
Oh, that’s not the part I was referring to. This is:
Davis’ success at FIU was more impressive, considering the challenges he faced at the school from his administration.
Davis said he was allowed to only offer one-year contracts to assistants, hampering his ability to hire coaches who could get multi-year deals elsewhere.
When Davis arrived in 2017, he found out all the shoulder pads were at least 10 years old. The school wouldn’t provide the money to purchase new shoulder pads, but an assistant coach had a contact at Mississippi State. The Bulldogs’ program had shoulder pads that were five years old, but they were replacing them, so Mississippi State gave FIU its shoulder pads at no cost.
“They were five years old,” Davis said. “But they were new to us.”
In today’s college football world, where some schools get new uniform combos literally every game, FIU is using uniforms that are nine years old, Davis said.
Davis also said his coaching staff was not allowed to go on the road recruiting the past two years because of the school’s financial reasons and COVID-19.
In early October, the school ultimately undercut Davis. After five games, FIU posted on the school’s official website and also the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) website an opening for the head coaching position.
The school said FIU’s university website lists job postings for each head coach and assistant in every sport even when there are no openings but did not address the AFCA posting.
“This year has been a nightmare,” Davis said. “You can imagine the players’ reaction when a head coach’s job was posted online. The administration has been sabotaging the program.
“Their decisions to post the job has resulted in a major negative impact on the football program and our ability to recruit and retain players.”
Good luck on that replacement hire, FIU.