FanDuel - WFBC

October 05, 2009

FSU Trustee: Time for Bobby Bowden to Go: Jim Smith, the chairman of Florida State University's Board of Trustees and one of the school's most influential alumni, said that this season should be Bobby Bowden's last as head coach. "My hope is frankly that we'll go ahead, and if we have to, let the world know that this year will be the end of the Bowden Era," Smith told the Tallahassee Democrat. "We have been in a decline not for a year or two or three but I think we're coming up on seven or eight. I think enough is enough." Bowden's wife Ann responded with a rare public comment on football-related matters, telling the Orlando Sentinel, "It's disrespectful to who he is, what he's done and I think it's very disrespectful of Jim Smith."

posted by rcade to football at 05:06 PM - 24 comments

If Bowden was running a clean program with high graduation rates, etc., etc., I would say give him some more rope. But his program has not been successful (at least under the standards by which elite programs are judged) for an extended period, and they seem to make the news every season or off-season for some unsavory off-the-field incident. Perhaps it was not appropriate for the trustee to go public with this type of call for Bowden's resignation, but it's time for him to go. Hand the reigns over to Jimbo Fisher, bring in someone else, or whatever, but this should be the last year.

posted by holden at 05:19 PM on October 05

The biggest FSU supporter in Jacksonville sports radio, Rick Belew, just said on 1010XL that it's time for Bowden to go. I think this is the end of the era.

posted by rcade at 05:34 PM on October 05

Very poor form by Jim Smith, no class at all. Perhaps he should go when Bowden does.

posted by billsaysthis at 06:01 PM on October 05

It has become clear that Bobby Bowden was never going to leave FSU of his own volition. So boosters like Jim Smith had two choices: Either watch him ride it back down to the mediocrity of the pre-Bowden era or give him a push. They've been extremely patient by current college standards.

Rick Belew thinks that Bowden is staying in the job because he's afraid he'll die without it.

posted by rcade at 06:23 PM on October 05

There are more than a few people claiming outrage over how Bowden is being treated and then it turns out they have ties to the Gainesville area. I think there are a whole lot of folks in Gator Nation who would love to see Bobby hang on until he's 100.

posted by beaverboard at 09:47 PM on October 05

Bowden, Joe Paterno ... if they had losing programs during the past few seasons, I might agree. I would think fans of both programs might want them to stay on the sidelines as long as God lets them.

posted by jjzucal at 11:02 PM on October 05

I'm surprised Jimbo Fisher hasn't smothered Bowden in his sleep already. He's been primed to take the reins at Florida State for years. Let him. Joe Pa, OTOH, should coach until he falls over dead.

posted by BitterOldPunk at 12:01 AM on October 06

always tough to push a legend out, even if they have stayed a bit too long.

No win situation, but given the current shape of the program, and all of the off the field issues, Bowden needs to go. Great career, but enough already.

posted by dviking at 12:17 AM on October 06

I wasn't aware that trustees had a say in who's on the staff or not. That's right, they dont!

Who does this Jim Smith character think he is? Even if anyone thought that it was time for Coach Bowden to step down, this is not the way you go about it. This has to be tough on the program and the legend himself.

posted by BornIcon at 08:51 AM on October 06

Bowden should have retired years ago. I left there more than 10 years ago. At that time, everyone knew he wasn't really running the program. He is a master at recruiting, but he wasn't doing the coaching. His naps in his office were legendary. He was more of an overseer than anything else. He isn't even that anymore. Plus, he is almost 80. Unfortunately, he seems to be unwilling to retire. If he won't go, someone is going to have to give him a push. Thank you for all of your years of service, Coach Bowden. The exit is to your right.

posted by bperk at 09:48 AM on October 06

...fans of both programs might want them to stay on the sidelines as long as God lets them.

Try to convince anyone in State College, PA, that Joe Pa is NOT God.

I have to agree that the FSU athletic programs seem to have more than their share of off-field problems, and the won-loss records don't appear to have been helped greatly by this. For a couple of seasons recently, Joe Pa appeared to have lost a little control of his team (on-campus fights, pot and under age alcohol use in apartments), but this year there have been no significant problems. Even "Pecks Bad Boy" Quarless has been a model citizen. The difference between Paterno and Bowden might be in the amount of authority the assistants have and their ability to exercise it.

posted by Howard_T at 11:47 AM on October 06

I don't think people realize how far Florida State has fallen. After 13 straight seasons with 10 or more wins from 1987-2000, FSU has lost four or more games six times this decade and is now the fourth best school in the state behind Florida, Miami and South Florida.

Bowden's been given a lot of time to right the ship, and he doesn't inspire much confidence by calling Jacksonville State -- a team the Noles barely beat 19-9, as "Troy" repeatedly in the post-game press conference. I can't blame Smith for deciding that it's time for him to go.

Football isn't a loyalty business. It's a results business. Just as Bowden gave innumerable players the hook for underperforming, it's time that FSU gave him a gold watch and put Jimbo Fisher in the job.

posted by rcade at 12:19 PM on October 06

I can't blame Smith for deciding that it's time for him to go.

But it's not up to Smith to make that kind of decision, especially out in public. As a trustee, he knew who he needed to talk to in order for there to be a change but to come out and embarrass Coach Bowden like that wasn't necessary at all.

I do agree that it's time for Coach Bowden to hang up the whistle but the least they can let him do is ride out into the ol' proverbial sunset.

posted by BornIcon at 03:03 PM on October 06

Smith isn't making the decision, he's voicing an opinion. Why is it OK for you to say that but not him, when he's put decades into the program?

posted by rcade at 03:09 PM on October 06

What ever happend to coaches Bowing out Gracefully?

posted by thatch at 08:50 PM on October 06

Smith isn't making the decision, he's voicing an opinion. Why is it OK for you to say that but not him, when he's put decades into the program?

Jim Smith is "voicing an opinion" that the media was able to get a hold of. My opinion about Coach Bowden doesn't matter since I'm not a trustee who is able to speak directly to the president of FSU if I chose to.

Even if I were a trustee and I felt that Coach Bowden should call it quits after this season, I wouldn't disrespect the man or his legacy by making my opinion public.

posted by BornIcon at 09:14 AM on October 07

Jim Smith is "voicing an opinion" that the media was able to get a hold of.

Yes, and it was an intentional move on his part after (presumably) a lot of private pressure. Longtime Orlando Sentinel sports columnist Mike Bianchi does a good job of explaining why it was necessary. "There is a feeling among his wife and supporters that boosters like influential trustee Jim Smith are being disloyal for wanting Bowden to retire after this season," he writes. "Bowden loyalists believe Bobby is owed a graceful and grand farewell by Florida State. I would agree -- except for one small problem. It's hard to say farewell to somebody who just won't leave."

posted by rcade at 09:26 AM on October 07

And that goes back to my original response, "Who does this Jim Smith character think he is?" Smith is not a part of the football program to be making his opinions public, he is just a trustee. He's not an assistant coach or even the assistant head coach so his opinions should be kept private or to himself.

Jimbo Fisher will have the final say as to who is going to be on the FSU staff as of next year and if he doesn't want Bobby Bowden on the staff, then that's an entirely different story.

I just don't think that a legend like Bobby Bowden deserves to be disrespected by some trustee who has never coach a college football game in his life. He deserves to be treated better IMHO.

posted by BornIcon at 09:47 AM on October 07

The "who does he think he is?" argument is completely bogus. Bowden is not a king, he's a coach. He answers to the school's leadership, the boosters who poured millions into the program and the fans.

As for the notion that it falls into Jimbo Fisher's lap to decide whether Bowden should come back or not, that's false. Fisher is not being given the power to decide that.

If he was, it would be a mistake of monumental proportions, since it would hang a dark cloud over his tenure as head coach. He was not hired as "coach-in-waiting" so that he could be the scapegoat for a decision to dump Bowden.

posted by rcade at 10:21 AM on October 07

The "who does he think he is?" argument is completely bogus. Bowden is not a king, he's a coach.

So your "Bowden is not king, he's a coach" argument isn't bogus? Bowden may not be a king but he sure is a legend while Jim Smith is just a trustee.

He answers to the school's leadership, the boosters who poured millions into the program and the fans.

Bobby Bowden does not answer to the boosters or the fans. When did it ever happen that a coach has to answer to the boosters of the program and/or the fans?

As for the notion that it falls into Jimbo Fisher's lap to decide whether Bowden should come back or not, that's false. Fisher is not being given the power to decide that.

Really?

"That source said the university will continue to move forward with a head coaching contract for offensive coordinator Jimbo Fisher, who has a deal with the university to be the next coach no later than January, 2011. That multi-year contract will grant Fisher the authority to assemble his own coaching staff at the end of this season"

posted by BornIcon at 10:34 AM on October 07

I've deleted a couple of responses here because I've come to the conclusion you have to be a troll. And that's not a complaint. Well played, you hooked me a hundred times, but there's just no way someone could manage to type out a response and yet be too dippy to not see the word "trust" in "trustee" and get the point. The horrible logic circles you run can't be the product of an honest response.

posted by yerfatma at 10:44 AM on October 07

Honestly, sometimes your comments are almost too ridiculous to even respond to.

As far as I knew, a trustee has "the duty not to delegate" and "the duty not to be in a conflict of interest position" which is what Smith did.

Since I disagree with Smith's approach, that makes me a troll? At least I'm giving my opinion about this topic, what does that say about you since you decided not to bless us with your wisdom on this topic?

posted by BornIcon at 11:25 AM on October 07

Bobby Bowden does not answer to the boosters or the fans. When did it ever happen that a coach has to answer to the boosters of the program and/or the fans?

Every college coach at a big-time school serves at the mercy of the program's boosters and fans. If you don't know this, you don't know anything about college football. As much as 75% of Bowden's $2 million salary is paid by boosters, not the state of Florida.

posted by rcade at 12:39 PM on October 07

what does that say about you since you decided not to bless us with your wisdom on this topic?

It says that I feel it's a waste of time. No matter what anyone says, you don't listen. It's completely poisonous to discussion. Whenever there's a thread about an ancient and revered sports personality, the thread is crushed by your continuous insistence that the world needs to bow at the feet of someone's prior greatness. How long would you hold this position about Bobby Bowden? Until he's dead? What if he's in a car accident and left a vegetable? Should he still be coach until he and his wife both agree it's time to stop? Should Brett Favre be provided with a starting QB job when he's 70 based on his love of the game in 1996?

posted by yerfatma at 12:45 PM on October 07

You're not logged in. Please log in or register.