By virtue of the wins the NCAA forced Penn State to vacate from 1998 to 2011 in the wake of the Jerry Sandusky child molestation scandal and subsequent cover-up, former Florida State coach Bobby Bowden, the father of University of Akron coach Terry Bowden, now holds the record for most wins as a big-time college coach.
Up until Bobby Bowden was forced out of FSU, he and his friend, Penn State coach Joe Paterno, waged their friendly rivalry for wins.
It’s impossible to say that those games never happened but, unless someone else sets a record for longevity sans scandal, Bobby Bowden now holds the FBS record with 377.
He takes no joy in the record.
Bowden released the following statement through his publicist:
“I left the house early this morning to play golf, and after we had played nine holes someone from the golf course brought me a note telling me about the NCAA’s rulings; the vacating of 111 wins from Penn State among them. Understanding what that meant, I must say that there is no rejoicing in the Bowden household. Nobody would want to have a title given to him this way, you know it? No sanctions, no amount of money, and no penalties could ever repay or repair the damage done to those young boys. I just hate the way all of this has happened. Nothing that has transpired today has changed what our teams accomplished over the years one bit. All of this attention and focus should be on the innocent victims of this tragedy.”
— George Thomas