Gagliardi, winningest coach in college football, dies

His daughter, Gina Gagliardi Benson, announced the former coach's death Sunday morning on Facebook.

Gagliardi began his coaching career at Carroll College in Helena, Mont. in 1949 and won four national titles during his time as the coach at Division III Saint John's University in Minnesota from 1953-2012. He retired with a record of 489-138-11 and surpassed Eddie Robinson for the career wins record in 2003.

Gagliardi's 64 years are the most in college football history. The previous most was 57 by Amos Alonzo Stagg at University of Chicago and University of the Pacific.

"John was a winner in so many ways, but mostly in his ability to connect with others," she wrote. "His appreciation of others ran so deep that it was the core of who John was."

Saint John's president Michael Hemesath offered condolences to Gagliardi's family.

"John Gagliardi was not only an extraordinary coach, he was also an educator of young men and builder of character" Hemesath said in a statement. "John inspired deep and enduring loyalty and passion among his players across the decades because he taught them lessons through the medium of football that served them well in their personal and professional lives long after graduating from Saint John's University. His is a legacy any educator would be extremely proud of."

Gagliardi was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 2006.

Comments (1)
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He was a person I always wanted to sit down and have a chat with...He who hesitates is lost and I lost this one. John, Bob & Mike- all Great Carroll College Coaches. I am lucky to have chatted with 2 of the 3 so I count my blessings as is.