Lovie Smith: Bobby Bowden’s comments on Winston “disappointing”
On Tuesday, former Florida State head coach Bobby Bowden shared his belief that the “consensus among FSU fans and boosters” is that Buccaneers quarterback Jameis Winston was an “embarrassment” to Florida State.
Winston’s off-field issues while he was in school have been well documented at this point, although it certainly didn’t seem that anyone had a bigger problem with Winston when he was winning the Heisman Trophy and a national title than they did when players were getting arrested and winning games during Bowden’s time as the team’s head coach.
Buccaneers coach Lovie Smith didn’t cite that part of FSU history when responding to Bowden’s comments on Wednesday. Smith said that he didn’t believe Bowden was speaking for the school and expressed his disappointment that Bowden characterized the quarterback that way.
“I went to a recent function with Derrick Brooks at his golf tournament and there were many former Florida State players there,” Smith said, via the Tampa Tribune. “They were all embracing Jameis -- they were excited that one of their own was getting ready to possibly be a Buccaneer. To say that Jameis is an embarrassment, after all he did for the university ...that’s disappointing. We don’t feel that way by any means. Coach Bowden is entitled to his opinion, of course, and Jameis isn’t perfect. None of us are. But I think Jimbo Fisher was proud of the job Jameis Winston did for his football team, and he coached him.”
Bowden went on to say that he thinks Winston was “probably” one of the best players in school history and that he’s “young enough” to get past his off-field troubles. Smith likely agrees with that part of the coach’s comments or selecting Winston first overall would make for a puzzling choice.