SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif .– Professional Football Hall of Fame member John Madden who played football and baseball in the late 1950s at Cal Poly before graduating with a bachelor’s and master’s degree and leading a highly successful career as a football coach and announcer in the National Football League, died Tuesday morning, December 28, 2021.

Madden, who lived in Pleasanton, Calif., With his 62-year-old wife, Virginia, was 85. The NFL announced his “unexpected” death and did not indicate a cause.

“John Madden is a true Mustang, a legendary model for all of us,” said Jeff Armstrong, president of Cal Poly, “whether in the field, as a coach, commentator or husband, father and grandfather of his family. May he lead the way and “Ride High” among the Mustang family for generations to come. “

In the 1980s, Madden was a major fundraiser for Cal Poly’s athletic programs as it lent its name to an annual golf tournament. He also participated in the Cal Poly athletics referendum in 1991 which ultimately led to the Mustangs being elevated to NCAA Division I status in 1994.

“You’d be hard pressed to find someone who meant more to football than John Madden,” Cal Poly athletics director said. Don Oberhelman. “As a former player and alumnus, his support and involvement in our football program has meant the world to all of us at Cal Poly.”

Madden was an imposing 6-4, 260-pound offensive and defensive lineman on the Cal Poly football teams in 1957 and 1958, winning California Collegiate Athletic Association honors as an offensive lineman, and also played baseball in 1958 and 1959 before graduating with a bachelor’s degree in education in 1959. He received his master’s degree, also in education, in 1961.

During Cal Poly’s virtual debut exercises last June, Madden received an honorary Doctor of Science degree (click here for speech).

Born April 10, 1936 in Austin, Minnesota, Madden grew up in Daly City, California, graduated from Jefferson High School, and worked as a caddy at the San Francisco Golf Club.

After a year in Oregon, Madden briefly attended the College of San Mateo and Grays Harbor College before enrolling at Cal Poly to resume his football career. He started on both sides of the ball on the line and was a catcher for the Mustangs baseball team.

A 21st-round pick for the Philadelphia Eagles in 1958 (the 244th overall), Madden was with the NFL club for a season before a knee injury cut short his professional career. He’s never played in a regular season game with the Eagles.

Madden’s coaching career began at Hancock College in Santa Maria, first as an assistant coach in 1960 and 1961, then two seasons as a head coach in 1962 and 1963. He was hired as Defensive assistant coach at San Diego State from 1964 to 1966 under Don Coryell.

Oakland Raiders owner Al Davis hired Madden as a linebacker coach in 1967 and replaced John Rauch as head coach in 1969, guiding the Raiders to a Super Bowl title after the 1976 season. , a 32-14 triumph over Minnesota and Seven Conference American Football. league appearances.

Madden was 103-32-7 in 11 seasons with the Raiders, including a 9-7 record in the playoffs. He’s never had a lost season as a head coach and still holds the Raiders record for most wins as a head coach.

Following his retirement after the 1979 season, Madden turned to the announcer stand, winning an unprecedented 16 Emmy Awards for Outstanding Sports Analyst / Personality and covering 11 Super Bowls for four networks from 1979 to 2009.

Madden started his broadcasting career on CBS, primarily with Pat Summerall, then moved to Fox in 1994, again with Summerall, and called prime time matches with Al Michaels on ABC on Monday nights and NBC on Sunday. evening before retiring in 2009 after the Pittsburgh 27. -23 victory over Arizona in the Super Bowl.

Madden was inducted into the Professional Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio, in 2006, and was a founding member of the Cal Poly Sports Hall of Fame in 1987. He was also inducted into the Sports Hall of Fame. of the Bay Area, California Hall of Fame and National Sports Media Association Hall of Fame.

He wrote five books – “Hey, wait a minute, I wrote a book”; “All Madden: Hey, I’m talking about professional football”; “The first book of football”; “One Size Does Not Fit All”; and “Everything you need to know about football”. It also lent its name to EA Sports’ video game Madden NFL, which has sold over 250 million copies, and has appeared in two films, “Little Giants” and “The Replacements”.

John and Virginia Madden married in 1959 in Santa Maria, California, and had two children, sons Michael and Joseph. Michael was a catcher at Harvard while Joseph played football at Brown. John and Virginia also have five grandchildren.

Services for Madden are on hold.