Leavitt: Bowden-must-go talk is 'ridiculous'
Newspaper columnists are writing that FSU coach Bobby Bowden should step down after the season, and the chairman of the FSU Board of Trustees has said the same, but USF coach Jim Leavitt said Tuesday that Bowden has earned the right to leave the Seminoles when he wants.
"About Coach Bowden, what's going on up there, I think is ridiculous," Leavitt said. "I think, to me, it's embarrassing ... I remember growing up here, when Florida State was a teacher's college and ... didn't have nearly the significance it has now. What he's done for that program is legendary, and to me, he has every right to retire whenever he wants to retire."
USF's 17-7 win at Florida State on Sept. 26, followed by the Seminoles' loss at Boston College on Saturday, has renewed talk that Bowden should step down, but Leavitt said such talk is disrespectful to Bowden and what he's accomplished.
"What he's done for college football, for the state of Florida, he deserves that right," Leavitt said. "That's my opinion. I know nobody cares about my opinion around Florida State and all that, but it is what it is. It's the opinion of a little guy that grew up and went to Northwest Elementary School, Tyrone Junior High and Dixie Hollins High School. I grew up in this state and followed Coach Bowden ... have had a chance to follow him through a lot of years. What that man has done, I'll never be in a world like that. What he's done is remarkable, one of the most remarkable things there is."