By: Ben Kaplan | WCTV Eyewitness Sports
November 5, 2019
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) -- Florida State football’s most storied head coach is hoping the university finds great success with its next one.
Bobby Bowden shared his thoughts with WCTV on the same night hundreds gathered to celebrate his 90th birthday, three days before he officially hits the milestone.
“I think the President and the committee need to get together and find the best man they can for the job,” Bowden said. “This school is too good of a school, and it's too good of a program here not to get the best. So I hope they can find the best."
Bowden won 304 games and two national championships during his three-plus decades in Tallahassee.
On Sunday afternoon, Willie Taggart was fired nine games into his second season, as FSU fell to 4-5 on the year following a 17-point home loss to Miami.
Overall, Taggart was 9-12 in 21 games as Florida State’s head coach, and was coming off the program’s first losing season since Bowden’s initial one at the helm back in 1976.
Bowden says finding someone who can bring in the right players is the key to turning the program around.
"The fellowship that you have with your coaches and players, I mean they are the whole key to it, the players. And that's what FSU has got to do right now, recruit and get more players."
Interim FSU head coach Odell Haggins spoke highly of Bowden during the celebration, saying, "I'm not going to flinch not one little bit. I'm going to go one hundred miles an hour. Doing what you taught me to do, that's the reason that I can stand up here and smile and the AD and the President entrusted me to lead this team again, because of you, because of y'all."
Former FSU Coach Jim Gladden also commented on the matter, "I hope who we bring in number one understands the culture of our community and area of Florida State University. Number two I hope we bring in someone who has humility, and treats people the way they need to be treated. It is more important to have character and integrity. and then the football will take care of itself. It would be nice to have someone with a proven championship record, a guy that has proven himself on the field and proven himself off the field."