Legendary BYU football coach LaVell Edwards dies


There’s no question that LaVell Edwards is the greatest coach in BYU football history. The legend passed away today at 86.

Originally reported by BYU Sports Nation, former BYU football head coach LaVell Edwards died on December 29. He was 86-years-old.

Edwards passed away after complications from breaking his hip.

There’s no other way to describe Edwards other than legendary. He led BYU football to the 1984 National Championship and turned a bad program into a powerhouse.

Before Edwards took the reigns in Provo, BYU football was 173-232-23.

His career record was 257-101-3.

He took the Cougars to 22 bowl games, winning seven of them. He also won 19 conference championships (18 in the Western Athletic Conference and one in the Mountain West).

Edwards – the namesake of BYU football’s home – was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 2004.

“LaVell not only changed the program, but he changed a lot of lives.” – BYU head coach Kalani Sitake

His 257 wins are good for No. 6 all time, trailing Joe Paterno (409), Bobby Bowden (357), Bear Bryant (323), Pop Warner (311) and Amos Alonzo Stagg (282).

Edwards was an innovator in college football. In an era when most teams were run-heavy, the Cougars utilized a strong passing attack. His teams led the nation in passing offense eight different times, led the nation in total offense five times and led the nation in scoring offense three times. He coached 11 consensus All-Americans and prominent quarterbacks Steve Young, Ty Detmer, Jim McMahon, Robbie Bosco, Marc Wilson and Steve Sarkisian.

Edwards had opportunities to leave BYU football. Following the Cougars’ national title, the Detroit Lions and Texas Longhorns offered him a job, but he never left Provo.

His coaching tree is perhaps the most impressive of his many accomplishments. Some of the more notable names include:

Mike Holmgren, Norm Chow, Kyle Whittingham, Brian Billick, Tom Holmoe, Andy Reid and Kalani Sitake.

As of the time of this writing, BYU has not made a statement on Edwards’ passing.