Leavitt addresses reports on coaching search
I was out of town at the Big East basketball tournament in New York last week during both of USF's first spring football practices, so we haven't had a chance to hear much from Bulls coach Jim Leavitt about his two defensive hires -- former Cincinnati defensive coordinator Joe Tresey in the same role and coaching the defensive backs and former Clemson linebackers coach David Blackwell in the same role and as a co-defensive coordinator.
Leavitt's interview after Thursday's practice was posted to Youtube.com, and Leavitt addressed the reporting of his coaching search. The Times has reported that four other candidates were offered positions on Leavitt's staff and opted to stay: Illinois co-defensive coordinator Dan Disch, Colorado secondary coach Greg Brown, Iowa State secondary coach Chris Ash and Georgia linebackers coach John Jancek.
Here's what Leavitt had to say about the coaching search and how it was reported in the media:
"I really am pretty happy (about the hires). I take my time. I'm pretty methodical about it. Everybody knows that, and I get beat up sometimes about that, but it's OK. It doesn't really faze me too much. It's the way I've done it for 13 years," Leavitt said. "When I feel right about something, then I go. The media was half-right and half-wrong, but nobody really knows, so I don't share. The truth is, half-right, half-wrong, with everybody."
Asked why he wouldn't step forward and correct things when something is reported incorrectly, he said doing so would get in the way of what he considers the private nature of a coaching search.
"There's a lot of dialogue that I really don't feel like should be shared between me and those coaches, because of the situation everybody's in," Leavitt said. "There's a number of people I talked to that nobody even knows about. There's a number of offers people thought I made that I didn't. ... I'm being honest. Sometimes coaches will say something to protect situations that are not accurate. I know why they're doing that, because they're protecting themselves. You can't just go interview and necessarily not have an offer and go back to your other job and everybody be happy.
"Sometimes they might say they had an offer and they didn't. Maybe it was a real strong discussion about what we want to do here, but I don't set everybody right on that, because I don't want to blow anybody up. I just keep quiet and let people write what they want, knowing they're dead wrong. I have to be that way. There's so much out there that's so inaccurate it's unbelievable. Sometimes I want to come out and just say it, but I just can't. I just can't."