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USF Track and Field Head Coach Warren Bye, Cross Country Coach Dena Reif Fired

The first firing of the Michael Kelly Era

USF Vice President of Athletics Michael Kelly announced today the firing of track and field head coach Warren Bye and his entire staff, which included cross country head coach Dena Reif.

From the release:

“I want to thank the staff for their years of service and dedication to South Florida,” Kelly said. “They have always led our track and field and cross country programs with character and integrity and have recruited tremendous young men and women to our university. We have high expectations for all our sports programs and I believe now is the time for a new direction in our track and field and cross country programs. On behalf of our university, I want to wish Coach Bye and his staff all the best in their future endeavors.”

Men’s outdoor track finished 7th of 8 teams in the 2019 AAC tournament, 8th of 9 teams in 2018, and 7th of 8 teams in 2017. Meanwhile, women’s outdoor track has finished dead last over the same span, including scoring a meager six points at the 2017 meet.

Bye had been the USF head coach for 13 years prior to his dismissal, while Reif has been at USF since 2012.

On the cross country side, the men finished dead last in 2016, 2017, and 2018 and the women finished next to last in 2016, and last in 2017 and 2018.

It was time to do something about these sports, especially with these sports accounting for 18 possible points in the War on I-4 battle. USF will never win this trophy if they start every single year down 18-0.

Kelly has made it clear that the status quo was not good enough and something had to be done.

“We have a strong athletics brand, an excellent university and an incredible recruiting base here in Florida,” Kelly added. “A national search for our new head coach will begin immediately.”