Jeff Bower (American football)

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Jeff Bower
Biographical details
Born (1953-05-28) May 28, 1953 (age 66)
Roswell, Georgia
Playing career
1972–1975Southern Miss
Coaching career (HC unless noted)
1975–1977Southern Miss (GA)
1978–1981Southern Miss (WR/QB)
1982–1986SMU (QB)
1987Wake Forest (QB)
1988Southern Miss (OC)
1989Oklahoma State (OC/QB)
1990–2007Southern Miss
Head coaching record
Accomplishments and honors
4 C-USA (1996–1997, 1999, 2003)
1 C-USA East Division (2006)
1990s C-USA Coach of the Decade
3x C-USA Coach of the Year

Jeffrey Jon Bower (born May 28, 1953) is a former American football player and coach. He served as the head football coach at University of Southern Mississippi for 18 seasons, from 1990 to 2007, compiling a record of 119–83–1. Bower assumed the role of head coach at Southern Miss on December 2, 1990 and announced his retirement on November 26, 2007, effective after the 2007 Bowl, which was played on December 22.[1] The Golden Eagles had a winning record in Bowers' final 14 seasons and played in a bowl game in 10 of his last 11 seasons.

Early life and playing career[edit]

Bower grew up in Roswell, Georgia, where he attended Roswell High School, he led the football team to two state championships and became a prep All-American, one of the school's first. He also started for two state champion baseball teams and one state champion basketball squad,[2] he was named Class A Player of the year and played in the state All-Star game.

Bower started his college football career at the University of Georgia before transferring to Southern Miss, he started as quarterback in 1973. His career records from 1973 to 1975 are still in the top five for many of the school's passing statistics, including third all-time in passing percentage.

Coaching career[edit]

Bower spent 29 years at the University of Southern Mississippi as a quarterback, assistant coach and head coach, he was named "Coach of the Decade" by Conference USA in 2004.[3]

Head coaching record[edit]

Year Team Overall Conference Standing Bowl/playoffs Coaches# AP°
Southern Miss Golden Eagles (NCAA Division I-A independent) (1990–1995)
1990 Southern Miss 0–1 L All-American
1991 Southern Miss 4–7
1992 Southern Miss 7–4
1993 Southern Miss 3–7–1
1994 Southern Miss 6–5
1995 Southern Miss 6–5
Southern Miss Golden Eagles (Conference USA) (1996–2007)
1996 Southern Miss 8–3 4–1 T–1st
1997 Southern Miss 9–3 6–0 1st W Liberty 19 19
1998 Southern Miss 7–5 5–1 2nd L Humanitarian
1999 Southern Miss 9–3 6–0 1st W Liberty 13 14
2000 Southern Miss 8–4 4–3 3rd W Mobile Alabama
2001 Southern Miss 6–5 4–3 4th
2002 Southern Miss 7–6 5–4 4th L Houston
2003 Southern Miss 9–4 8–0 1st L Liberty
2004 Southern Miss 7–5 5–3 3rd W New Orleans
2005 Southern Miss 7–5 5–3 3rd (East) W New Orleans
2006 Southern Miss 9–5 6–3 1st (East) W GMAC
2007 Southern Miss 7–6 5–3 4th (East) L
Southern Miss: 119–83–1 63–24
Total: 119–83–1
      National championship         Conference title         Conference division title or championship game berth

Coaching tree[edit]

Assistant coaches under Bower who became college head coaches:


  1. ^ "WDAM: Bower quits as Southern Miss coach".
  2. ^ Doherty, Tim (August 26, 2007). "Master of Consistency: Mississippi's dean of coaches just keeps winning". The Clarion-Ledger. Gannett Company. Archived from the original on February 13, 2015.
  3. ^ "Bower resigns as Southern Miss coach after 14th winning season". Associated Press. November 26, 2007. Retrieved June 9, 2009.