College football is one sport that is played most consistently in the USA, and most community colleges and universities frequently play it in all 52 States in the country. Many coaches have graced the sport over the years, but Bobby Bowden has stood tall above the rest. When playing football, the rules are simple enough to follow and understand, and that there is never a bad season for football, unlike some other outdoor activities. Bobby Bowden is one of the most celebrated college football coaches. He served as the football coach, head track, and field coach at various colleges, including Howard College, South Georgia College, and Florida State University (Bowden & Schlabach, 2011). His trust and strong confidence in God also became two of the major reasons he was considered the greatest.
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Bobby Bowden is, without a doubt, one of the most celebrated football coaches, as seen from his great successes and having coached several young men in different colleges and universities in seven decades. Bowden did things the right way and reached out to help so many young men. He was a coach and a counselor to many young men both on and off the football pitch. He provided his wards with a living example of good character and uprightness, helping to shape the young men into great and successful football players, responsible sons, good spouses, and future fathers. One fact is that many people honored and idolized Bobby Bowden because of always standing up for the truth and honor. He was ethical and always authentic in his doings. Bobby Bowden, at one point, said, “Faith is the most important thing in the world to me. It is the greatest strength, and it has helped me go through hard times” (Bowden et al., 2009). This clearly shows that his birthright was beyond the game of football and his role as a coach.
As one of the sport’s most influential coaches, Bobby Bowden deserves to be remembered because of his accomplishments. He won more games than every college football coach except Penn State’s Joe. In his time with Florida State University, he guided the team to 388 victories and two national tournaments, finishing every season with at least ten wins. Bowden taught the young men important life skills to always tell the truth, compete and make winning their priority, and always have faith in God. He was one of the top active coaches in winning percentage in bowl games. He was the first coach to lead his team to bowl games in 27 consecutive seasons (Bowden & Schlabach, 2011); thus, he deserves to be the greatest college football coach of all time.
Bowden stands out to be the greatest coach of all time as far as his accomplishments are concerned. He remains strongly involved in the fellowship of Christian Athletes, presenting The National Bobby Bowden Award yearly to an outstanding student-athlete for achievement on and off the field. During his seven decades as a coach, Bobby Bowden never dithered in his faith. Bowden’s faith was so strong that he made sure all of the players knew the gospel. Unfettered by his successes as one of the most triumphant college coaches in the history of football, Bowden said his relationship with Jesus was more significant than any of his accomplishments as a player and as a coach (Bowden et al., 2009). He inspired two of his sons to become head coaches at Clemson University and Auburn University (Bowden & Schlabach 2011). Bobby Bowden coached 26 consensus All-Americans, including multiple winners of college football’s outstanding exclusive award.
Also, it is through Bobby Bowden that the Florida State University became one of the prodigious workings out grounds for the upcoming players. This was a great achievement, and that is why he is still remembered up to date. Bobby Bowden was awarded an award that distinguishes a coach each year with matchless attainment on and off the field. This is also one of his greatest achievements as a coach. He formed a team, the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, and trained them on fieldwork and spirituality. In 2011, through the group’s efforts, Bowden was bestowed with the Children’s Champion Award for Leadership Development by the Children’s Hunger Fund to appreciate his humanitarian work. He also received from the United States Sports Academy the Amos Alonzo Stagg Coaching Award for his phenomenal success as a coach. Another greatest achievement is that his team managed to beat Nebraska in 1980 (Bowden et al., 2009). After several attempts his team was one of the few with a winning record playing against Nebraska.
Taking everything into account, Bobby Bowden is truly the paramount college football coach of all time, as seen through his achievements and rewards. Although he is a retired football coach, his accomplishments are still remembered, and he remains a great teacher, role model, and mentor to many young men and women alike. His strong belief in God was on another level and was so inspiring to all who knew him. We all need to follow Bobby Bowden’s steps to be a better person. We can learn a lot through Bowden’s leadership qualities, and as a leader, one can follow Bowden’s ways.
Bowden, B., & Bowden, S. (2001). The Bowden Way: 50 years of leadership wisdom. Taylor Trade Publications.
Bowden, B., Bowden, T., Family, B., & Brown, B. (2009). Winning’s only part of the game: Lessons of life and football. Hachette UK.
Bowden, B., & Schlabach, M. (2011). Called to coach: Reflections on life, faith, and football. Simon and Schuster.