Spurrier backing Bobby Bowden
Posted: Tuesday, August 11, 2009 5:30 pm
By: By PETE IACOBELLI, AP Sports Writer
COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — Steve Spurrier backs Bobby Bowden when it comes to vacating victories.
Spurrier said Sunday that Bowden and the Seminoles should not have to give up 14 victories as part of the NCAA penalties because of an academic cheating scandal at Florida State.
Spurrier also said Florida State’s track team should not lose its NCAA championships that took place during the time in question.
“Yeah, I think (football) should get the wins and the track team should get the championship,” Spurrier said.
When Spurrier was Florida’s football coach, he would needle Bowden and the Seminoles when he could. Spurrier once called the school “Free Shoes University” in 1994 when Bowden had to deal with a scandal involving his players and Foot Locker.
This time, though, Spurrier thought the NCAA’s proposed penalties were too severe.
“It was something that none of the coaches were involved with and just a few of the players in the classroom,” Spurrier added. “So yeah, hopefully … I think the penalty was way too severe.”
Bowden has 382 wins, one shy of Penn State coach Joe Paterno for the major college lead lead.
Losing that many victories would all but end Bowden’s chances of overtaking the Nittany Lions coach.
Spurrier was asked if he had talked to Bowden about the issue.
The South Carolina coach chuckled and said he had too many issues involving his team to spend much time worrying about the Seminoles.