College football legend Bobby Bowden revealed this week that he has come to terms with a terminal medical condition.
In a statement shared with the Tallahassee Democrat, Bowden said he is “at peace” with the prognosis. The 91-year-old former head coach was diagnosed with COVID-19 last year and has been in poor health ever since.
“I’ve always tried to serve God’s purpose for my life, on and off the field, and I am prepared for what is to come,” Bowden said. “My wife Ann and our family have been life’s greatest blessing. I am at peace.”
Naturally, Bowden has received an overwhelming outpouring of support as the college football world also comes to terms with this. Countless people are taking to social media to reveal what an impact Bowden had on their lives.
Crying at work, heartbroken. This man is everything to a lot of people
— Jess (@FSUjessica2011) July 21, 2021
God Bless you coach. This breaks my heart. Thank you for all the memories and making my childhood/young adult years so fun and instilling great life lessons in all of us.
— Mark Mitchell (@TheMarkMitchell) July 21, 2021
Prayers up. Spent an afternoon in May with Bobby Bowden. So gracious and caring. Legend. https://t.co/sfFehLBtCi
— Brandon Marcello (@bmarcello) July 21, 2021
Really sad to see this… Bobby Bowden and FSU was as big a part of my college football childhood as any program. https://t.co/f4yqz54nVz
— JOHN JOHNSON II (@TheJJohnsonTV) July 21, 2021
Bobby Bowden began coaching all the way back in 1954 as an assistant at Samford (then known as Howard). He spent several years as head coach of South Georgia State College from 1956 to 1958 and then a few more at Howard before getting bigger and bigger jobs with bigger programs.
He became head coach at West Virginia in 1970 and led the school to five winning seasons and two bowl games in six seasons.
But it was at Florida State where he became one of the all-time greats. Taking over in 1975, Bowden would run the program until 2009, winning over 300 games and two national championships in 1993 and 1999.
– Built FSU to the brand they are today.
– 377 Wins
– 2 National Championships
– 12 ACC Championships
– 14 Consecutive Top 4 Finishes
– Great man off the field, the character limit has to make me stop. Peace be with you and your family. pic.twitter.com/xI2oCrwf3l
— CFB Home (@CFBHome) July 21, 2021
He currently ranks No. 2 behind Joe Paterno on the NCAA’s all-time wins list.
Our hearts go out to Coach Bowden, his family and loved ones.