John Madden Passes Away

( Last Tuesday, Emmy-winning sports broadcaster and NFL Hall of Fame coach John Madden died at the age of 85.

Madden, whose coaching career produced 103 wins and a Super Bowl title for the Oakland Raiders died unexpectedly and no details about his cause of death were released by the NFL.

Madden’s career began first as a coach, then as a broadcaster, and finally as the face of the “Madden NFL Football” video game that launched in 1988 and sold more than 250 million copies.

As coach of the Oakland Raiders, Madden led them to seven AFC Championship games and won the Super Bowl following the 1976 season. His .759 winning percentage is the best ever among NFL coaches with over one hundred games.

After he retired from coaching at age 42, Madden became one of the most recognizable NFL game broadcasters in the history of the sport. Over the course of three decades, he called games on CBS, FOX, ABC, and NBC.

His unique style and exuberance, coupled with his vast knowledge of the game, made him a popular game-day commentator among fans. He won an unprecedented 16 Emmy Awards for outstanding sports analyst/personality and had the honor of covering eleven Super Bowls for four networks from 1979 to 2009.

Madden’s career in sports broadcasting began at CBS after he retired from coaching in large part due to suffering from claustrophobia from flying. During his time at CBS, Madden famously traveled from game to game riding in an RV nicknamed the “Madden Cruiser.” He and Pat Summerall became the top game-announcing duo for CBS Sports.

His final broadcast was Super Bowl XLIII after the 2008 season when the Pittsburgh Steelers defeated the Arizona Cardinals 27 to 23.

John Madden is survived by his wife of over sixty years Virginia Fields and his two sons Michael and Joseph.

Jesse, one of Madden’s grandsons, was the starting quarterback of his high school football team. In September, Jesse made his NCAA debut playing for the University of Michigan against Northern Illinois.