Thursday, April 23, 2009


In its unending quest to salvage Bobby Bowden's shot at the all-time major college wins record, Florida State has appealed to the NCAA to allow Bowden to keep all of the 382 wins on his resume -- even if the football team has to forfeit some of those victories.

The appeal also asks that the players who weren't involved in the recent academic scandal be able to keep their individual records.

The basis for their argument? Ummm ....

I don't know. If you're forced to forfeit (or "vacate") wins -- and basically all record that those games were ever played -- I don't really see any reason certain records should still count. It'd be convenient for Bowden, of course, and I know everyone in Tallahassee would get warm fuzzies if Bowden gets to retire as the all-time wins leader, but a forfeit is a forfeit.

And this quote from Bowden is just laughable:
"There's just so many kids who didn't need help and didn't want help, but somebody was giving it. We suspended 25 guys for four ballgames and lost two of them. They all got [grades of] F's. Cheating, to me, should be a university problem. We discovered it. They didn't discover it. If they make us forfeit these games, doesn't that mean any time someone cheats a team is going to have to forfeit games? It seems to me that would open a can of worms."
Really??? So the players were completely innocent victims of a rogue academic adviser with the devious goal of helping athletes get better grades? Please.

And yes, if a player is cheating in school, the team SHOULD have to forfeit any wins he participates in -- by rule, that player is ineligible.

Bowden is one of the all-time greats and is deserving of his accolades, but statements like these are the reason not too many people in the college football world will be shedding tears when he finishes behind Joe Paterno (who, by all accounts, has always done things the right way).

The NCAA should stick to its guns here; when a situation arises that's truly deserving of a penalty, don't back down just to cater to the record book.

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