College football

Florida State coach Jimbo Fisher signs new deal

2013-12-31T14:03:00Z 2013-12-31T21:00:43Z Florida State coach Jimbo Fisher signs new dealThe Associated Press The Associated Press
December 31, 2013 2:03 pm  • 

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. | Florida State coach Jimbo Fisher will remain with the program through 2018 after signing a three-year contract extension.

Texas reportedly had interest in Fisher replacing coach Mack Brown before Florida State made the announcement on Tuesday.

The top-ranked Seminoles face Auburn in the BCS championship game on Monday night.

"We're extremely pleased with the direction of our program and believe that this new contract will assure that coach Fisher is in place to lead the Seminoles for a long time to come," athletic director Stan Wilcox said in a statement. "Coach Fisher enjoys the full support of the leadership of the university and we look forward to the continued success of our football program on the field and in the classroom."

Fisher's previous deal ran through 2015 and paid $2.75 million annually. Details of the extension were not immediately available.

The Seminoles have returned to national prominence in four seasons under Fisher after Florida State posted 7-6 records in three of the last four seasons with coach Bobby Bowden. Florida State went undefeated during the regular season for the first time since 1999 and has won back-to-back Atlantic Coast Conference championships. The program hadn't won consecutive conference titles since 2002-03.

Fisher was anointed coach-in-waiting when hired as offensive coordinator in 2007. He previously won a national championship as the LSU offensive coordinator in 2003 with Nick Saban.

"He hasn't failed to do anything I didn't think he could do," Bowden told The Associated Press in a phone interview. "Everywhere he's been, he's done an excellent job.

"You never know what kind of head coach a guy's going to be when he comes from an assistant. ... He's passed the test in any arena he's been in."

Bowden has known of Fisher since he was a quarterback at Samford playing for his son Terry Bowden. Fisher joined the Samford coaching staff in 1988 and Tommy Bowden sung his praises back then.

Bowden warned the university during the season that it better lock up Fisher long term before other programs tried to steal him away.

"That's what happens," Bowden said. "Having the success he has had, every job that comes open his name was going to be in it. Whether he wants to be in it or not.

"I was hoping he would stay where he is. I really think, to win, there's a better opportunity at Florida State than Texas. That's because of the strength of schedule and everything they have to play out there and the competition in that state. I was glad he chose to stay here because that money can really attract you."

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