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Terry Bowden

Title Head coach
College University of North Alabama
Sport Football
Born 1956 (age 53–54)
Place of birth Morgantown, West Virginia
Career highlights
Overall 122-55-2
Bowls 2-1
Coaching stats
College Football DataWarehouse
1 SEC Western Division Title (1997)
1993 Paul "Bear" Bryant Award
1993 Walter Camp Coach of the Year
Playing career
1977-1978 West Virginia
Position Running back
Coaching career (HC unless noted)
Florida State (GA)
Akron (Assistant)
North Alabama

Terry Bowden (born 1956) is an American college football head coach at the University of North Alabama, and former head coach at Auburn. Bowden is the son of retired Florida State head football coach Bobby Bowden. His siblings include Tommy Bowden, the former head football coach at Clemson, and Jeff Bowden, the former offensive coordinator at Florida State who serves as his receiver's coach at UNA.



Bowden attended and played football at West Virginia University, where he was a member of Phi Kappa Psi Fraternity, and graduated magna cum laude with a degree in accounting. His father, Bobby Bowden, was the Mountaineers' coach until 1975, and Bowden lettered twice as a running back for his father's successor, Frank Cignetti, Sr. [1][2] In addition to his post-graduate work at Oxford University in England, Bowden also received his Juris Doctor degree from Florida State University College of Law.


Terry Bowden began his coaching career as a graduate assistant at Florida State before becoming the nation's youngest head coach at age 26 when he accepted the position at Salem College in 1983. While at Salem, he won two WVIA Conference titles. In 1986, Bowden left to be an assistant coach at Akron University for Gerry Faust. In 1987, Bowden became the head coach at Samford University, a school where his father played and coached. At Samford, Bowden directed the program's move from Division III football to Division I-AA scholarship football. In 1991, Bowden's Samford team reached the I-AA semifinals.[3]


Auburn University

In 1992, Bowden was hired to succeed Pat Dye as the head football coach of Auburn University. Bowden's hiring occurred while the program faced NCAA sanctions, which included scholarship reductions, a one-year television ban, and a two-year postseason ban.

During his first year at Auburn, Bowden led the Tigers to a perfect 11-0 season, becoming the first coach to go undefeated in his debut season at a Division I school. The 1994 season ended 9-1-1, establishing Auburn's longest winning streak in history with 20 games.

In 1997, Auburn reached the SEC title game, where they held as much as a 20-7 lead, but lost after they gave up a last minute, 73-yard touchdown pass by Peyton Manning of the Tennessee Volunteers.

In 1998 Bowden's fate at Auburn changed as he faced criticism for recruiting woes, off-the-field issues that resulted in player discipline, and in his relationships with Auburn supporters. These issues combined, with a string of injuries at center and in the backfield, lead to a disastrous start of the 1998 season. After starting with a 1-5 record, Bowden resigned as head coach the night before Auburn played against Louisiana Tech[4]. In conversations with Athletic Director David Housel, Bowden was given no assurances he would have a chance to remedy the situation for the next season, and that he believed his termination was imminent.[5] The team was coached for the remainder of the season by Bill Oliver.

Broadcasting career

After resigning at Auburn, Bowden accepted a role as a studio analyst and color commentator for ABC Sports' college football coverage where he oftened referred to his father Bobby Bowden as "Daddy". He is also an exclusive college football columnist for Yahoo! Sports. In 2006, Bowden became the expert analyst for Westwood One radio network's College Football National Game of Week.[6] He also co-hosts "The Coaches Show" on Sirius Satellite Radio with Jack Arute and works several times a month as a motivational speaker.

In a July 30, 2007 column, writing a few weeks before the 2007 college football season, Bowden said he was eager to go back to coaching for the 2008 football season.[7] In December 2007, the coaching job at his alma mater West Virginia opened up: Rich Rodriguez left to be Michigan's coach. Bowden issued a statement which read in part, "Coming home to West Virginia would obviously be the dream job for me." [2] However, West Virginia offered the job to one of Rodriguez's assistants, Bill Stewart (who was the interim head coach when the Mountaineers upset the Oklahoma Sooners in the 2008 Fiesta Bowl.) In late 2007, Bowden interviewed for the Head Coaching job at Georgia Tech, which ultimately went to Paul Johnson.

Bowden returned to the broadcasting booth for the 2008 season. At the end of the year, Bowden took the head coach position at a Division II school, North Alabama.

North Alabama

On December 31, 2008 it was announced that he would be the next head football coach at the University of North Alabama in Florence.[8] He was officially introduced as the head football coach at the University Center on January 1, 2009.[9] Bowden was tapped to replace Mark Hudspeth, who left after directing the Lions to a 12-2 record and a third berth in seven years in the national playoff semifinals to become the passing game coordinator at Mississippi State University under new head coach Dan Mullen.

Coaching tree

While at Salem and Samford, Bowden coached quarterback Jimbo Fisher to a NCAA Division III National Player of the Year award.[10] Fisher later became quarterbacks coach for Bowden at Auburn, and after much success as the offensive coordinator for LSU, is now the head coach at Florida State. Another quarterback from Bowden's time at Auburn, Patrick Nix, has been the offensive coordinator for Georgia Tech and Miami (FL).

Head coaching record

Year Team Overall Conference Standing Bowl Coaches# AP°
Salem Tigers (West Virginia Intercollegiate Athletic Conference) (1983–1985)
1983 Salem 3-7
1984 Salem 8-3
1985 Salem 8-3
Salem: 19-13
Samford Bulldogs (Independent) (1987–1992)
1987 Samford 9-1
1988 Samford 5-6
1989 Samford 4-7
1990 Samford 6-4-1
1991 Samford 12-2
1992 Samford 9-3
Samford: 45-23-1
Auburn Tigers (Southeastern Conference) (1993–1998)
1993 Auburn 11-0 8-0 1st (West) 4
1994 Auburn 9-1-1 6-1-1 2nd (West) 9
1995 Auburn 8-4 5-3 2nd (West) L Outback 21 22
1996 Auburn 8-4 4-4 3rd (West) W Independence 25 24
1997 Auburn 10-3 6-2 T-1st (West) W Peach 11 11
1998 Auburn 1-5* 1-4* 6th (West)
Auburn: 47-17-1 30-14-1
North Alabama (Gulf South Conference) (2009–present)
2009 North Alabama 11-2 8-1 1st D-II Playoffs Quarterfinal
North Alabama: 11-2 8-1
Total: 122-55-2
      National Championship         Conference Title         Conference Division Title
#Rankings from final Coaches Poll.
°Rankings from final AP Poll.

‡On probation and ineligible to win the conference title, to be selected to a bowl game, or to be selected in the Coaches Poll.
*Bowden resigned after the first six games of the 1998 season.


External links


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