Sunday, November 7, 2010

The Immortal Joe Pa

AP Photo


He became the first coach in FBS (Division 1-A) history to win 400 games.

And one thing is certain, NOBODY, ABSOLUTELY NOBODY, will come close to equalling the legendary Paterno's milestone in Division 1-A football, any time soon.

Paterno, who has been coaching the Penn State Nittany Lions (6-3) since 1966, is the 3rd overall coach to win 400 games. Here's a list of coaches who have won over 320 games at all levels of college football:

1) John Gagliardi - 476 (Division III) [active]
2) Eddie Robinson - 408 (Division II-FCS)
3) Joe Paterno - 400 [active]
4) Bobby Bowden - 377
5) Bear Bryant - 323

If Paterno (who is 83) hangs around for one more season, he will most likely pass the legendary Eddie Robinson and move into 2nd place, but catching all-time leader (John Gagliardi) is an unlikely scenario. Amazingly enough, Gagliardi is still coaching, so chances are his record will be around for centuries to come.

But Gagliardi and Robinson were Division III and Division II (FCS) coaches. In Division I-A (FBS), Paterno is in a class by himself.

Jim Tressel (237), Frank Beamer (235) and Mack Brown (218) are the closest in the rear view mirror, but not all their wins came in Division 1-A. So Paterno's record will be around for a while-- that's for sure.


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