Tuesday, December 1, 2009
It Ain't Right
With competition coming from Steve Kohut, I figured that I had better step up the postings lest I be deserted by my followers. I'd also like to give a shout out to my newest follower Heide. Hopefully you become more actively involved than that brigand Ethan128. That being said, I'd like to express my dismay today at the forced retirement of Bobby Bowden. The man is as big of a legend as Bud Kilmer, and has an equally iconic statue to match. After all this man has given to Florida State over his 34 years as coach, I thought it very disrespectful and ungrateful to force him to step down in such a way. Shame on the Florida State athletic department.
34 years. Think about that sports fans: 34 years. Bobby Bowden has been the head coach at Florida State since well before most of us were born. Over that time, Bobby Bowden has compiled a record of 315-97-4, won two national championships, set a record for most consecutive years ranked in the top 5 at 14, sent countless quality athletes onto the NFL and even ended up coaching against several of his sons. When Bowden inherited the Seminole program, they had only won 4 games over the previous 3 seasons. Now they are a national powerhouse. Seems to me that Florida State owes Coach Bobby an awful lot.
Not only is Bowden a great coach, he is also a great human being. In admiration of his outstanding character, the Bobby Bowden Award is given to one player each year who excels on the field, in the classroom and in the community. There is no better model for this award than Bowden. If you have seen the movie "We Are Marshall", you might remember that Bowden, then the coach at West Virginia, put a cross on the back of his players helmets in solemn remembrance of the terrible plane crash that killed most of the Marshall football team in 1970. What you may not know is that Bowden also petitioned the NCAA to let the Mountaineers play as the Marshall Thundering Herd, in full Marshall uniforms, to finish out their season after the crash left them with only a few players left. You can not find a man like Bobby Bowden just around the corner, that is for certain.
Certainly in his later years Bowden might have started to lose his edge. If his best players got in trouble, he would overlook it and let them play. During academic scandals he turned a blind eye. And most importantly to FSU fans, the team started to lose more and more games. But is this really enough to force a living legend from his post? Absolutely not.
At Penn State, Joe Pa paces up and down the sidelines raving like a lunatic each Saturday. Do Penn State fans care? No. Has Bobby Bowden not earned as much as Joe Pa? Why not let Bobby Bowden have one more year as head coach? That's all he wanted. It's not like removing him now is going to give the Seminoles a better shot at the BCS title next year. Bobby Bowden's forced retirement from Florida State was a very shameful act by the university in my opinion. He brought them up from nothing and was basically shown the door after a few bad years. I hope Florida State loses a few fans over this disrespectful act. Especially this one.