Chances are, USF athletic director Michael Kelly arrived on campus two summers ago with a briefcase in hand and list of prospective football coaches in his back pocket.
Considering the volatility of the coaching profession, especially at the Division I-A level, any AD worth his vehicle stipend has such a list ready when needed. Problem is, we don’t know which names Kelly has jotted down.
Now that Charlie Strong has been dismissed, in which direction does Kelly gravitate? Is he partial to more grizzled guys seeking a second act in their respective careers (much like Strong did at USF), or does he favor the 30-something wunderkinds who have shown promise and precociousness as coordinators?
No one can say; Kelly never has hired a football coach before. All we can do is make an educated guess at the names potentially under consideration. We’ve divided our guess-list between the oldies and the newbies.
Jim Leavitt, FSU assistant
Let’s address this right up front: The guy who built the Bulls program from scratch got a $2.75 million settlement from USF a year after his 2010 firing. When it was announced, the Tampa Bay Times reported the settlement stipulates that Leavitt cannot apply for any job at USF “in any capacity,” and that if he does, USF “is free to reject and disregard it.”