tampabay.com

Before the offense, he had to coordinate deal

Jimbo Fisher moved quickly when FSU backed away.

By BRIAN LANDMAN
Published January 13, 2007


Jimbo Fisher needed only about 20 minutes from the time he heard about Florida State coach Bobby Bowden's terse statement that seemingly ended their courtship to make the call that resuscitated the situation.

"We talked pretty quickly," Fisher said Friday at his first news conference since accepting a three-year deal Monday to be FSU's new offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach.

Bowden said late Saturday that he had withdrawn an offer and would look at other candidates who want to share FSU's "traditions and values."

Fisher, who had been at LSU the past seven seasons and said he had been leaning toward accepting the FSU job "very strongly quite a few weeks ago," called the apparent breakdown a miscommunication.

"Deep down, I never really doubted it would happen," he said.

To be sure, Fisher, 41, had other opportunities to consider, including a lucrative, last-minute overture from his old LSU boss, Nick Saban, now the coach at Alabama.

Fisher said he headed to Tallahassee instead of Tuscaloosa because of his great respect for the FSU program and Bowden, the man who inspired him 20 years ago as a new assistant.

"As a young coach, the ability to work under the winningest coach in college football history, not many folks get to do that," Fisher said. "And hopefully as Coach Bowden has quite a few years left to coach, we can help turn things back around and put him back on top where he's always been.

"To be a small part of that, along with everyone else who's around here, it was an opportunity I didn't feel like I could walk away from. Also having the trust and faith in the man and knowing him like I do, it was too good an opportunity. It was solely based on that. And hopefully he helps me reach career goals that I've got as far as developing me as a coach."