Former Florida State coach Bobby Bowden is 88 and still keeps a busy schedule of speaking engagements. On Wednesday he was in Omaha, Neb. — his fourth city in a week — to receive the Tom Osborne Legacy Award for his contributions to college football and leadership. Bowden sat down with the Associated Press to discuss FSU, where he won more than 300 games and two national titles from 1976-2009, in addition to other topics:
What did you think of your successor, Jimbo Fisher, leaving FSU to take the Texas A&M job?
I did not think he would go. I know he wanted a football building, training table, a place to take care of injuries. He saw he can get everything he wants at Texas A&M — everything. Money? He didn’t have to worry about that. He didn’t have (a new building) at Florida State, but they were going to get it for him. It was going to take a while.
How is he going to like the SEC West?
Ooh wee. Now he’s going to have to play Alabama, Auburn, LSU, Mississippi State. It’s going to be a tough road to plow. You know what my feeling is? He is capable. It’s not like me looking at him and saying, "Jimbo, you can’t do it."
Are you pleased with FSU’s hiring of Willie Taggart?
Florida State is where he always wanted to be. He was raised in Florida. He always wanted to coach at Florida State. Only being at Oregon for one year, that ain’t good. It’s like he said, this is the only job I would have come for.e_SClBI understand he called you right when he got the job.
He sure did. … If I can help him in any way, I’ll sure do it. He’s a kid who is raised in Florida and he watched the Bobby Bowden Show every Sunday.
What’s your take on Nick Saban and Alabama winning five national titles since 2009 and Saban winning his sixth?
He’s making himself the best ever. Is he right now? It’s not for me to say. But, dadgum, when he finishes his career, there might not be anyone even close.
You’ve said you like the College Football Playoff’s four-team format and don’t think it should go to eight. Does unbeaten UCF have a legitimate gripe about not having the opportunity to be in the playoff?
Yeah, I think they do, although the system doesn’t allow it. But if I were them, I’d be yelling just like them, celebrating an undefeated season and a national championship.
ALABAMA: All-America safety Minkah Fitzpatrick, safety Ronnie Harrison and tailback Bo Scarbrough announced they’re skipping their senior seasons to enter the NFL draft. Coach Nick Saban said defensive tackle Da’Ron Payne is also entering the draft.
Okla. State: Defensive coordinator Glenn Spencer was fired.
No. 13 FSU 105, Miami 67: Nausia Woolfolk scored a career-high 23 as the Seminoles (15-2, 3-1 ACC) routed the Hurricanes (11-6, 1-3).
No. 3 L’VILLE 100, No. 2 N. DAME 67: Asia Durr scored 36, Myisha Hines-Allen had a career-high 31 and the host Cardinals (19-0, 5-0 ACC) dominated against the shorthanded Irish (15-2, 4-1), who dressed only seven players.
No. 17 Texas A&M 79, No. 6 Tenn. 76 (OT): Danni Williams scored seven points in overtime to lead the host Aggies (14-4, 3-1 SEC) over the Vols (15-1, 3-1).