Coach Jim Leavitt Fired from South Florida After Allegedly Hitting Player, Joins List of Coaches Who Like It Rough
South Florida head coach Jim Leavitt has been fired this morning, allegedly for striking a player during a game. Leavitt is being investigated concerning his actions toward special teams player Joey Miller.
This makes him the third college coach let go for alleged abuse since the regular season ended—Leavitt joins Kansas' Mark Mangino and Texas Tech's Mike Leach in the unemployment line—and it also gives Leavitt entry into the club of abusive coaches, a club where he has plenty of company.
Here are a few others who like it on the rough side.
1. Woody Hayes
Woody Hayes was known for his temper, and his career came to an end because of his anger. He punched Clemson nose guard Charlie Bauman in the 1978 Gator Bowl after Bauman returned an intercepted pass to the Ohio State sideline. He was fired the next day.
2. Mark Mangino
Mark Mangino was dogged by controversy throughout his time at KU, but what got him fired were reports of player abuse that surfaced in November. He was accused of both grabbing players and verbally abusing them, and he resigned soon after.
3. Bobby Knight
Knight's best-known controversy involved a flying chair, but that incident was one in a long of alleged verbal and physical abuses committed by Knight.
Knight was accused of such things as kicking his son, Pat, during a game; throwing a potted plant at a secretary; and chocking player Neil Reed at a practice.
He was fired from Indiana after a student said Knight grabbed his arm roughly when the student spoke to Knight in a disrespectful manner.
4. Latrell Sprewell
"Spree" gets an honorable mention here after he choked Golden State Warriors head coach P.J. Carlesimo in 1997. Sure, Sprewell wasn't a coach, but he did choke one.
5. Mike Leach
Mike Leach was recently dismissed from Texas Tech after sending player Adam James—who had been diagnosed with a concussion—to a darkened shed. Leach was initially suspended, but shortly after the suspension began, he was let go by the university.