Bower’s removal from USM a shame

Published 12:01 am Tuesday, December 11, 2007

It is a crying shame the way Coach Jeff Bower was treated by USM. He gave his all when he was playing at USM, later as an assistant coach, and finally as the head coach. He brought much joy to the fans as well as prestige to the University of Southern Mississippi.

This same cruel thing happened to Coach Pie Vann, who was a wonderful football coach in the early 1950s. He took on the big schools, such as Alabama, who was ranked No. 1 in the nation at that time. Mississippi State and Ole Miss were afraid to play them, and it took an act of the Mississippi Legislature for those two teams to play Mississippi Southern College.

Coach Vann was winning against well-known coaches and universities, but was beaten by powerful teams when playing in the bowl games.

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A group of individuals got together and had an undergraduate write a letter to the editor asking that Coach Vann resign. This group could not understand that a coach cannot win every game and that someone has to lose.

I strongly suspect that USM will have many dry seasons to come before they will have another winning season. I would not like to be the football coach next season at USM.

I wish the best for Coach Bower and his family as they move on.

Barthel D. Waggoner, Ph.D.

Natchez resident