Bobby Bowden Now All-Time Winningest FBS Coach in Wake of Penn State Sanctions

By David LaRose

Last season when Joe Paterno was tossed out of the Penn State football program for his involvement in the Jerry Sandusky scandal, he left as the winningest head coach in Division I football history.

Now, in wake of the Penn State sanctions handed down by the NCAA earlier today Paterno is no longer in possession of that title.

As part of the NCAA sanctions Penn state was vacated of every single win between 1998 and 2011, which totals 112 victories, 111 of which were won by Paterno as the head coach. The wins starting in 1998 are vacated because, according to the Freeh Report, that is when Penn State officials first became aware of the sexually deviant acts being committed by Sandusky.

This now means that Paterno’s career win total stands at 298 and not the 409 wins he left the sport with.

As result of the vacated wins former Florida State head coach Bobby Bowden is now the all-time winningest FBS coach in history with 377 wins. That is now the benchmark college coaches will strive for in order to become the all-time wins leader. Bowden’s 377 victories could have been more but he also had victories vacated from his record after the 2009 NCAA sanctions handed to the Seminoles football program. Furthermore, Paterno has fallen not only from grace but he has fallen down the all-time wins list to seventh.

Due to the sanctions, former Grambling head coach Eddie Robinson is now the all-time winningest coach in Division I history with 408 wins. The most wins at any level is held by John Gagliardi of St. Johns University, a Div. III program in Minnesota, with 484 victories.

The fallout from the Sandusky scandal, Freeh Report and now the NCAA sanctions will be felt for years in State College. Now, it will be interesting to see if Penn State players start to jump ship, now that they are eligible according to the NCAA, and how many incoming recruits back out and commit elsewhere.

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