Sports Outside the Beltway

Buffalo Bills hire Chan Gailey as head coach

He becomes the third man to lead the team since last September. From ESPN-

The Buffalo Bills have hired former Dallas Cowboys and Georgia Tech coach Chan Gailey as their new coach.

The team announced the hiring at a news conference at its facility in Orchard Park, N.Y., Tuesday afternoon.

The Bills were said to be impressed with how Gailey has brought teams to the playoffs with quarterbacks such as Mike Tomczak, Kordell Stewart and Jay Fiedler. In fact, Bill Cowher — whom the Bills had been courting to replace the fired Dick Jauron — highly recommended Gailey to the Bills.

Cowher planned to make Gailey his assistant head coach/offensive coordinator if he came back. Gailey has coached in four Super Bowls and has had his teams go to the playoffs in 11 of his 15 NFL seasons.

The 58-year-old Gailey fits the profile set by newly hired general manager Buddy Nix, who preferred hiring someone with head-coaching experience. Gailey has run college and pro teams, including a two-year stint as coach of the World League of American Football Birmingham Fire in 1991-92. He also coached Troy State (1983-84) and Samford (1993).

Gailey was coach of the Cowboys in 1998-99, following Barry Switzer, reaching the playoffs in both seasons but failing to win a playoff game. He was dismissed after the 1999 season, and Cowboys owner Jerry Jones has acknowledged his mistake in firing Gailey.

He went 44-33 at Georgia Tech from 2002 through 2007 and led the Yellow Jackets to a bowl game in all six seasons at the helm. But he went 0-6 against rival Georgia and he was fired after finishing 7-5 in his final season.

Gailey has extensive pro and college head coaching experience, and was offensive coordinator of both Kansas City and Miami in the NFL during the last ten years. Will he be successful in Buffalo? I won’t hazard a guess, but just say that the Bills are in need of a great deal of rebuilding.


Florida State Coach Bobby Bowden to announce his retirement

The Tallahassee Democrat has the scoop-

Bobby Bowden’s legendary coaching career at Florida State University is expected to end Tuesday, the Tallahassee Democrat has learned.

Bowden is expected to announce his resignation by way of a statement to be released Tuesday, sources told the Democrat.

As part of his retirement, Bowden is expected to be offered a non-coaching position at FSU for an unspecified amount of time. In addition to any settlement compensation that may be negotiated as part of his retirement, Bowden is also entitled to $1 million upon his retirement as part of a clause in his coaching contract that was agreed upon at least 10 years ago.

It is unclear if Bowden will coach the bowl game or not, but sources have said if he does coach one last game then the Gator Bowl may try to select FSU for its Jan. 1 game.

I’d be surprised if Bowden isn’t allowed to coach the Seminoles one last time. He has been the only football head coach the school has known for 34 years. When Bowden took over FSU was a wreck. A independent that schools big and small were beating up on. It was either 1972 or 1973 that the Seminoles went without a win for the year(The Florida Gators had a similar year in 1979 but had one tie). Bowden quickly reversed the school’s football fortunes. In his second year FSU went 10-2, in his 4th year the Seminoles went 11-0 and received an invitation to the Orange Bowl to play Oklahoma. Florida State got its ass kicked 24-7 on Jan. 1st 1980, but the next year pulled stunning road upsets at Nebraska and Ohio on the way to a second straight OB engagement with Oklahoma. The second time around was a great battle that only saw the Sooners win 18-17. Bowden had established the Seminoles as a Division One football in five years.

FSU football fans won’t soon forget Bowden and his legacy. Assistant Coach Jimbo Fisher is expected to be named Bowden’s replacement.


Samford University basketball player Jim Griffin dead at 23

He is believed to have an unknown heart condition. Until a year ago, I would have wondered how a person wouldn’t have warning signs of heart problems. That changed when I was hospitalized on July 30th. I had a bicuspid heart valve and an ascending aortic aneurysm and almost no symptoms from either condition. RIP Jim Griffin.

Griffin, 23, was found dead Tuesday morning in his residence hall, according to coach Jimmy Tillette. Tillette said the senior from Chicago apparently died from an undetectable heart condition.Jim Griffin

“It’s a cruel twist of fate,” Tillette said, according to the Birmingham News. “Jim was a guy who was known for playing with his heart, and for him to possibly pass away from a heart malady is hard to take.”

The Jefferson County coroner’s office has not released a cause of death, but an autopsy was scheduled for Wednesday.

Samford spokesman Philip Poole said Griffin apparently died in his sleep. He had played in a pickup basketball game and lifted weights Monday night.

Tillette said Griffin had not had a previous medical condition.

“It’s devastating for our team right now,” Tillette said, according to the Birmingham News. “He was a sixth man, but he was everybody’s favorite guy. He was probably our least athletic guy but got the most out of it.”


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