Richard D. L. Fulton
Mount Saint Mary’s University (MSMU) announced on September 6 that Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ Head Coach Todd Bowles had earned a bachelor’s degree from the Mount.
According to Donna Klinger, executive director of MSMU’s Communications Office of University Marketing & Communications, Coach Bowles earned his bachelor’s degree 37 years after he left college to pursue a professional football career, further noting that Bowles had completed the requirements for a Bachelor of Science degree in youth and community development.
Bowles began his “untraditional adult educational journey” in the summer of 2020, prior to the Buccaneers’ eventual Super Bowl championship season at the suggestion of Anthony Agnone, his longtime agent and 1975 Mount St. Mary’s alumni. Agnone recommended that he reach out to the Mount about completing his degree through the university’s Center for Accelerated and Adult Education which is highly experienced in adult learning and academic programming in nontraditional settings.
Working with Associate Provost David McCarthy, Bowles designed an interdisciplinary degree in youth and community development that will serve him well, especially in his community work, Klinger stated.
Bowles stated, “Completing my degree was something I had always wanted to do over the years because it was something I had promised my mother when I went to play in the NFL, and I wanted to follow through on that promise.”
He further said, “Over the years, as I became a father, it became something I wanted to do in order to set a proper example for my sons as they continue on their educational paths. I have also worked pretty extensively with children through my various community projects, and I felt it was important to show them they can achieve whatever they set their mind to.”
Director and Associate Professor of Human Services Dr. Timothy Wolfe stated, “Todd’s success in football, both on the field as a player and on the sidelines as a coach, is not at all surprising… given his work ethic and attention to detail. These same traits were evident in his assignments.”
“I am extremely appreciative of the faculty and the administration at Mount St. Mary’s for helping me navigate through what seemed like a daunting task when I started this journey,” said Bowles. “When I had questions or needed some guidance along the way, I always felt supported, and that played a large role in my ability to successfully complete the program.”
Associate Provost McCarthy, professor for the required course Ethics and the Human Good, shared that in addition to completing assignments about the teachings of Plato and Aristotle, Bowles developed and presented his philosophy of coaching as well as strategies, struggles, and barriers in developing a team and individuals for the good—in both football and human sense.
“We would laugh often about how well his years of coaching have brought him to the same place as classics in moral philosophy,” McCarthy said.
Bowles plans to attend the university’s commencement exercises in May 2023.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers Head Coach Todd Bowles.