Bower quits as Southern Miss head coach - WDAM.COM - TV 7 - News, Weather and Sports

Bower quits as Southern Miss head coach

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Southern Miss coach Jeff Bower resigned Monday, ending one of the nation's most successful coaching tenures.

He and Athletic director Richard Giannini made the announcement officially at a 4 pm news conference in Hattiesburg. Giannini said it was a mutual decision. 

Bower's contract will be paid off with state and private funds, Giannini said.

A national search will be conducted for a new head coach, Giannini said.

Two days ago Bower clinched his 14th straight winning season with a 16-10 victory over Arkansas State and accepted his 10th bowl invitation in 11 years.

Bower has spent 29 years at the university as a quarterback, assistant coach and head coach.

He was 119-82-1 in 17 years as the school's head coach and had been in the same job longer than all but three coaches in the Football Bowl Subdivision. Only Penn State's Joe Paterno (42), Bobby Bowden (32) of Florida State and Virginia Tech's Frank Beamer (21) have longer tenures with their schools. His only losing seasons came in 1991 and '93.