Joe Paterno and Bobby Bowden have been elected to the College Football Hall of Fame.
Since Joe Paterno and Bobby Bowden failed to meet the qualifications for induction into the college football Hall of Fame, the folks who run the hall simply changed the rules. Instead of requiring a coach be retired, the National Football Foundation decided to make any active coach over 75 eligible for induction. With the red tape cut, the winningest coaches in Division I-A were elected Tuesday and can now be called Hall of Famers.
“I wasn’t expecting it because I thought you had to die first — and I didn’t want to volunteer for that,” Bowden said during a conference call. “They might have changed the rules to get me and Joe in. But I’m very excited about it.”
Paterno, who will turn 80 in December, has won 354 games and two national championships in 40 seasons as Penn State’s head coach. No one has ever coached longer and won more games at one Division I-A school. The 76-year-old Bowden leads major college football with 359 victories, 286 — and two national titles — since taking over at Florida State in 1976.
Certainly, these guys deserve it.
The two coaches will be joined by a slew of players:
â€¢ Bob Anderson — RB, Colorado, 1967-69
â€¢ Bennie Blades — DB, Miami (Fla.), 1985-87
â€¢ Carl Eller — T, Minnesota, 1961-63
â€¢ Steve Emtman — DL, Washington, 1989-91
â€¢ Thomas Everett — FS, Baylor, 1983-86
â€¢ Chad Hennings — DT, Air Force, 1984-87
â€¢ Chip Kell — OG, Tennessee, 1968-70
â€¢ Mike Phipps — QB, Purdue, 1967-69
â€¢ Mike Rozier — RB, Nebraska, 1981-83
â€¢ Jeff Siemon — LB, Stanford, 1968-71
â€¢ Bruce Smith — DT, Virginia Tech, 1981-84
â€¢ Emmitt Smith — RB, Florida, 1987-89
â€¢ Charlie Ward — QB, Florida State, 1989, 1991-93
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