With his team at four wins, more than the past three seasons combined, Terry Bowden has earned himself an extension at Akron, according to Dan Wolken of USA Today. Bowden's contract now runs through 2018 and arguably gives some stability to a program that was in desperate need of it prior to Bowden's arrival.
The Zips have won three of their last four after starting the year 1-6, and Akron dropped three of those games -- to Michigan, Louisiana-Lafayette and Northern Illinois -- by a touchdown or less. Coming into the year, Bowden emphasized progress and the growth his players have made from the challenges they faced the past three seasons.
“I feel like I’ve had 15 years of experience in one year, with the difficulties to overcome,” he said. “But looking back, you have to see where these young men grew from it and learned from it. They’ll be better from each loss. Nothing’s ever as good for you as wins, but you sure can grow a lot and learn a lot from a loss. These kids ought to be pretty grown up after the last three years.”In speaking with him at MAC Media Day, it's clear Akron has provided the former Auburn coach a new beginning at the FBS level, and he said he intends to stick around for awhile, making the Rubber City his home. He spoke highly of former Nebraska and current Ohio coach Frank Solich and has patterned his goals for the Zips' program after what the Bobcats have been able to do in recent years. At this point, a bowl game in 2014 would be a huge improvement; Akron hasn't won six or more games since 2005 under J.D. Brookhart.