December 1st, 2009 will forever be remembered as a day of sadness for the College Football world and seminole nation. Why? Bobby Bowden, Florida State University’s greatest football coach, announced his retirement. Whether it was forced by the University’s Athletic Director or not, Bowden’s last game as head coach will be on New Years Eve in the Gator Bowl. This game will end an era of one of the most successful coaches in college football history.
Bobby Bowden started his coaching career in 1954 at Howard College, in Birmingham Alabama. He would coach there for four years taking them to a 31-6 record. In 1970, Bowden would move on to coach West Virginia University for six years leading them to a 42-26 record and a Peach Bowl Title in 1975. Even though Bowden already had success with previous schools, getting the head coaching job at Florida State University is where he became a legend. Before Bowden’s arrival to Tallahassee in 1976, the Seminoles won only four games in three years and basically were a non-existent program. Bobby Bowden changed that perception quick by leading his Seminoles to 33 winning seasons in 34 years of coaching at FSU. His only losing season would be his first year.
If you didn’t know that Bobby Bowden was a “BAD MAN” let me drop some facts for you to chew on. Bowden led Florida State to fourteen straight seasons with 10- plus wins and finished those seasons ranked amongst the top five teams in both major College football polls (A Division I-A record). With FSU, he has a win/loss record of 315-97-4 and a career record of 388-129-4, which is second all-time to Penn State’s head coach Joe Paterno. He also has a bowl record of 21-10-1 (Second all-time). Bowden has 37 Division I-A winning seasons (a record); twelve ACC championships, winning nine straight from 1992-2000; and two National Championships in 1993 and 1999. In 2006, he was elected into the College Football Hall of Fame.
So let’s go to the future. It’s December 31, 2009, New Years Eve, Florida State vs West Virginia in the Gator Bowl. Bobby Bowden’s last game coaching against his former team and the Associated Press has stated that all 77,474 tickets have sold out. Leave it to Bowden to upstage the National Championship game. Now you can’t tell me that Bobby Bowden ain’t a “BAAAAD MAN”! If I can be Ed lover for a minute “C’mon Son…give us one more year Mr. Bowden!”
By Keith Madyun