Bowden Family Gears Up for 'Bowden Bowl'


by - Correspondent -
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Bobby Bowden has won 80 percent
of his games as Florida State
head coach (226-53-4).

CLEMSON -- There's plenty of joking between Tommy and Bobby Bowden - especially when Tommy is talking about his father.


"I'll probably wake him up," said Tommy about his Sunday afternoon call to his dad. "He likes to nap a bit on Sunday afternoon."


Talk about his dad's team, though, is no joking matter.


Despite the fact that Clemson has scored 31 or more points over the past four games, Tommy Bowden isn't sure he can figure out a way to score against the Seminoles on Saturday.
Florida State will come into Death Valley ranked No. 1 in the first college football game between father and son. A win would give Bobby Bowden his 300th win and keep alive his shot at a second national title at Florida State.


"Our guys will be real loose," said Tommy. "If they lose, they lose a shot a the national championship. If we lose, we've lost our fourth game. There's not nearly as much at stake for us as it is for them."


Just because there won't be as much pressure on his team to win, Tommy doesn't think it will be any easier to score.


"There's only one team that they've given up points to (Georgia Tech) and they've got a Heisman Trophy candidate at quarterback," said Bowden.


Florida State gave up 504 total yards to Georgia Tech, but is first in the conference in total defense. The Seminoles give up an average of 308 yards a game.


Clemson had 542 total yards Saturday against Maryland, which had been averaging 307 yards a game on defense. Clemson quarterback Woody Dantzler ran for 183 yards and passed for another 252 yards in his second start of the season at quarterback after replacing Brandon Streeter, who suffered a broken collar bone in the North Carolina game.


"I thought we could do this once we got some experience," he said. "We lost our staring quarterback when he was doing pretty good. We're starting only two seniors and we're doing some new things. I didn't think we could do this well. I thought it would eventually come. Not right now, though."


He knows that Florida State will be the toughest challenge so far, though. Especially with most of his family pulling for his father.


"Most of them will be pulling for my father because of what he's got at stake," he said. There are six Bowden children. All but Terry, an analyst for ABC, will be at the game. Sister Robin is married to Clemson defensive coach Jack Hines and brother Jeff is a coach for his father. Another brother Steve is a financial planner in Birmingham and another sister Ginger is a lawyer.


"There will be a lot of family here," said Tommy. "I'll have to have some more tickets added to my contract."

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