FIU coach Butch Davis won’t return, says football team being ‘sabotaged’



Florida International Panthers football coach Butch Davis told Action Network on Monday that his contract will expire next month without a new deal and that he won’t return past the 2021 season.

He also accused the administration of sabotage and revealed the lack of resources afforded to him and his coaching staff.

“This year has been a nightmare,” Davis told Action Network. “You can imagine the players’ reaction when a head coach’s job was posted online. The administration has been sabotaging the program.”

Earlier this year, FIU posted a job opening for head football coach on the school’s website. The position was also posted on the American Football Coaches Association’s job board.

“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.”

For example, he told the Action Network, the Golden Panthers have not been allowed to recruit on the road for two seasons due to the financial restrictions presented by the pandemic. Assistants were only offered one-year deals, Davis said.

He also said that when he arrived in 2017, the equipment situation was so dire that FIU acquired shoulder pads from Mississippi State that had already been used for five years. Game jerseys are nine years old, according to Davis.

USA TODAY Sports has reached out to FIU for comment about Davis’ comments and assertions.

FIU Golden Panthers head coach Butch Davis reacts during the first half against the Miami Hurricanes at Hard Rock Stadium.

FIU Golden Panthers head coach Butch Davis reacts during the first half against the Miami Hurricanes at Hard Rock Stadium.

Davis rose to coaching prominence as a member of Jimmy Johnson’s staffs with the Miami Hurricanes and the NFL’s Dallas Cowboys. In Dallas, he became defensive coordinator for two seasons before returning to Miami as head coach (1995-2000).

It was then back to the NFL for Davis, who served as head coach of the Cleveland Browns before resigning 11 games into the 2004 campaign. He was general manager of the team for his final three seasons there and led the Browns to the postseason in 2002 after going 9-7 in the regular season, his best record in Cleveland.

Davis’ tenure at North Carolina (2007-10) – his return to coaching after a three-year hiatus – was marred by academic misconduct. He was fired during a subsequent NCAA investigation. Davis spent time as an ESPN analyst and was hired in November 2016 by FIU.

Heath Glick was named FIU interim athletic director last week after Pete Garcia resigned from the job, one he held for 15 years. Garcia hired Davis, who found immediate success at FIU with three straight bowl appearances and a 23-16 record from 2017-2019.

But the Panthers went winless in a five-game pandemic-shortened season last year and are 1-9 this season, with an 0-6 mark in Conference USA play.

Follow Chris Bumbaca on Twitter @BOOMbaca.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Butch Davis won’t return as FIU Golden Panthers football coach


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