Bobby Bowden Not Happy to Take Over As Winningest Coach
But Bowden, a long-time friend of Paterno's, was not pleased to hear of the bittersweet news.
"I'd like to rejoice," Bowden told Mike Vasilinda, according to News Channel 7. "I'd like to say, 'Oh boy,' but how can you do that? I mean somebody else, that thing had to happen up there for me to be the winningest coach. And I'd rather to have that thing not to have happened. And until they get some closure on that thing, I don't know how you're gonna celebrate it.
"We finished nine holes (of golf) and here comes a cart driving right down the middle," he continued. "And that's usually bad news when somebody comes at me in a golf cart. And the guy had four or five phones and said you need to make these phone calls. And I said, 'What happened?' 'Well, Penn State got this and that, Joe Paterno's games taken away, you're now this or that.' And I was thinking, 'Well how can I enjoy this, how can I celebrate?' I can't, I can't because of the circumstances you know."
Just a few weeks ago, Bowden told Yahoo! Sports that he thought the Joe Paterno statue should be removed because "every time somebody walks by and sees that statue, they're not going to remember the 80 good years, they're going to remember this thing with (former assistant coach Jerry) Sandusky."
Bowden continued by saying that he was feeling a lot of emotions, but the one that prevailed was sadness.
Paul "Bear" Bryant sits alone behind Bowden at No. 2 on the all-time list with 323 career wins as a coach for Maryland, Kentucky, Texas A&M and Alabama.
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