BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - No one is more one is more deserving to receive the honor of becoming a member of the College Football Playoff selection committee than Jeff Bower.
For 29 years he helped guide the Southern Miss football program to a winning reputation. Bower, a Georgia native, signed a football scholarship with Southern Miss and played quarterback. He later became an assistant coach under Bobby Collins at Southern Miss.
When Collins left Southern Miss to become head coach at Southern Methodist University, Collins brought Bower to Fort Worth and Jeff was named SMU assistant coach. He coached the quarterbacks at SMU from 1982-86.
Bower spent one season at Wake Forest in 1987 and was the offensive coordinator at Oklahoma State in 1989 before accepting the head coaching job at Southern Miss in 1990.
Bower had the Golden Eagles flying high with 14 consecutive winning seasons, four Conference USA championships, and six bowl victories. Bower accomplished his success with many of his players who were overlooked by big-time programs in the SEC. He noticed their potential and Bower got results.
He was selected C-USA Coach Coach of the Year three times. In 2004, Bower was named conference "Coach of the Decade."
Bower became the first of three former Oklahoma State offensive coordinators to be named Southern Miss head coach. Larry Fedora and Golden Eagles head coach Todd Monken all served in that capacity for the Cowboys.
Bower was inducted into the Southern Miss Sports Hall of Fame in 1988. In 2003, he was named Johnny Vaught All-American Head Coach by the All-American Football Foundation.
Bower along with three other new members, Lloyd Carr, Herb Deromedi and Rob Mullens willl begin a three-year term in the spring. As a member of the College Football Playoff Selection Committee, Bower and all the committee members wil be responsible for selecting the top four teams in the playoff and assigning them to semifinal games as well as placing the next group of teams in the remaining New Year's bowl games.
The Committee meets in-person beginning midway through the football season and name the weekly top 25 teams leading up to the final selections.
Bower, Carr, Deromedi and Mullens replace Mike Gould, Pat Haden, Tom Osborne and Mike Tranghese, charter members of the committee whose terms expired after the 2015-16 season.