Bulls dismiss Strong after 3 seasons
Coach sacked when team fails to qualify for a bowl game for first time since 2014
USF has fired coach Charlie Strong following a disappointing 4-8 season.
“I would like to thank Coach Strong and his staff for their hard work and contributions to our program,” athletics director Michael Kelly said in a statement confirming the news. “I have tremendous respect for Coach Strong and his dedication to recruiting and developing young men of talent and character and leading them with integrity. He has represented USF with dignity and class and we wish Coach and his family the very best.
“I met with our student-athletes and staff today to inform them of my decision and to make clear USF’s commitment to a championship-caliber football program that recruits and develops student-athletes and provides the resources and support for them to achieve great success in competition, in the classroom and in the community.”
Strong spent three seasons at USF, taking over the program following the departure of Willie Taggart in 2017. In his first season with the Bulls, he led the team to 10 wins and a top-25 ranking. The following year, the team won seven games before losing its final six contests.
USF was picked to finish third in the American Athletic Conference East Division this season by the media, but the Bulls lost three of their first four games. The team won three of its next four games before dropping its final four games, including a 34-7 loss to host UCF Friday night.
USA Today’s Dan Wolken was the first to report the news that staff members were being told that Strong was out as head coach.
This is the first time that USF hasn’t qualified for a bowl game since 2014.
Kelly, who is in his second year as the USF’s athletic director, said the school will begin a national search for its next head coach.
“Be assured that the process will be deliberate and will move with the necessary speed. I will
USF coach Charlie Strong led the Bulls to a 10-2 record and a top-25 ranking in his first season before falling to 7-6 in 2018 and 4-8 in 2019.