Bowden May Retire Today
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) - Bobby Bowden plans to meet with
university officials again Tuesday and says he has not made a
decision about his coaching future at Florida State.
Bowden told The Associated Press at his home Monday evening that
he is still sifting through "options" presented to him when he
met with Florida State President T.K. Wetherell and athletic
director Randy Spetman for an hour earlier in the day.
"Yes, there are options," said a relaxed Bowden, who was
eating a light dinner while seated in an easy chair in his home
office surrounded by memorabilia from his long career. "One of
them is to be the head coach."
The Tallahassee Democrat and ESPN.com reported Bowden, the
second-winningest coach in major college football history, is
expected to announce his retirement Tuesday morning.
When asked about reports Bowden was stepping down, his wife,
Ann, told AP that nothing had been finalized - "that's why they're
Bowden said that no time had been set for the meeting on Tuesday
and Browning Brooks, director of communications for the university,
said no news conference has been scheduled.
The coach, who turned 80 on Nov. 8 and is in his 34th season at
FSU, said earlier Monday that an announcement about his coaching
future would come Tuesday.
Bowden ended the 10-minute interview at his home saying only,
"I'll see you tomorrow."
After Florida State lost to its regular-season finale to Florida
on Saturday, Bowden said he had to do some soul searching before
deciding whether he would return in 2010.
There are questions about how responsibilities will be divided
next season between Bowden and coach-in-waiting Jimbo Fisher -
especially when it comes to hiring assistants. Fisher, the
offensive coordinator, receives $5 million from Florida State if
he's not the head coach by January 2011.
Earlier this year, Bowden had strongly suggested he wanted 2010
to be his last season. But Bowden, whose 388 career wins are second
only to Penn State's Joe Paterno among major college coaches, has
also said he could not return as a head coach with no authority.
Spetman described Monday's meeting in Bowden's office as
"It's always cordial with Coach Bowden," Spetman said. "He's
a good man."
The coach was in good humor when he told a couple hundred
boosters Monday at his weekly luncheon that he had the discussion
about his future. The coach drew laughs from fans several times
with quips and one-liners.
Bowden was not as upbeat after FSU's embarrassing 37-10 loss to
the Gators on Saturday. The Seminoles have lost their last three
games to Florida by scores of 45-12, 45-15 and 37-10.
But by Sunday, Bowden said he wanted to return in 2010 for his
35th season at Florida State, but that decision couldn't be
finalized before he met with Florida State administrators.
Bowden has been on a one-year rollover agreement with the
university for several years, but that ends after the 2010 season.
The winningest coach in Atlantic Coast Conference history,
Bowden teams put together the one of most dominant runs in college
football history between 1987 and 2000 with 14 consecutive finishes
in the nation's top five and a pair of national titles.
But the Seminoles' fortunes haven't been nearly as good in
recent years, finishing this year with a 6-6 record after starting
the year with high expectations and a preseason No. 18 ranking.
In 1993, despite a late-season slip at Notre Dame, Florida State
won its first national title after near misses in 1987, 1988, 1991
and 1992 - several seasons because of losses to nemesis Miami,
which won three national titles during that span.
Bowden had a perfect season in 1999 as the Seminoles became the
first team to go wire-to-wire in The Associated Press poll ranked
No. 1 from the preseason to finish.
Since winning their 12th ACC championship in 2005, the Seminoles
have been 16-16 over the past four seasons against league
"There's no doubt in my mind Florida State will come back,"
Bowden said Monday.
(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
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