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Former Miami Dolphins Head Coach Don Shula Dies at 90

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistMay 4, 2020

Don Shula watches as  Tuscarora High School coach Michael Burnett speaks after winning the Don Shula high school coach of the year award during a press conference a news conference Friday, Feb. 5, 2016, in San Francisco. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)
Charlie Riedel/Associated Press

The Miami Dolphins announced Monday that former head coach Don Shula died Monday morning at the age of 90:

Miami Dolphins @MiamiDolphins

The Miami Dolphins are saddened to announce that Head Coach Don Shula passed away peacefully at his home this morning. https://t.co/MKAtXFA4zd

Miami Dolphins @MiamiDolphins

The Greatest. Thank you for everything, Coach Shula. https://t.co/7eXY4ZOKn6

One of his children confirmed the news to Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald.

Shula is the winningest coach in NFL history, earning 328 regular-season victories in 33 years with the Dolphins and Baltimore Colts.

The news resulted in an outpouring of support from the NFL community:

Brian McCarthy @NFLprguy

Sad day for the NFL and sports https://t.co/tu4Oy5ikEG

Tom Garfinkel @TomGarfinkel

Today is a sad day. Coach Shula was the rare man who exemplified true greatness in every aspect of his life. He will be so missed by so many but his legacy of character and excellence will endure. All my best to Mary Anne and the Shula family. https://t.co/PLoIhyPGrl

Jim Irsay @JimIrsay

We will miss you, Don Shula. One of the last of the all-time greats from an incredible era.

Jason La Canfora @JasonLaCanfora

Don Shula's legacy is etched into the fiber of the NFL. You cannot tell the story of this league without a chapter on the winningest coach of all time who spanned generations and spawned the only perfect season

Adam Beasley @AdamHBeasley

Don Shula was a titan. Two-time Super Bowl champion. Four-time Coach of the Year. Most regular season wins (328) and total wins (347) in NFL history. The Perfect Season. And an absolute legend in South Florida. RIP.

Chris Tomasson @christomasson

Sad news on the passing of Don Shula. I had a chance to talk to him a few times in person and several times on the phone when covering the Dolphins from 2011-13. Was always a class act. RIP to a coaching legend.

Armando Salguero @ArmandoSalguero

Don Shula was the face (and jaw) of a franchise throughout the 1970s, 80's and into the mid-1990s. He raised two Lombardi Trophies in Miami. And, oh yes, his team in 1972 was perfect -- a feat never equaled before or since.

Kenyan Drake™ @KDx32

“One thing I never want to be accused of is not working.” RIP Coach Don Shula.

Cameron Wolfe @CameronWolfe

Glad Don Shula and the 1972 Dolphins were honored as the greatest at halftime of Miami’s home finale in December. It was fun to watch fans sing happy birthday to him. They also had a champagne toast on the field. A lot of smiles that day and love for a legend. https://t.co/VuD2ksin6L

Jeff Darlington @JeffDarlington

My most treasured day as a sports reporter: On the day before Don Shula’s 80th birthday, he invited me to his house. We spent hours on his veranda, overlooking Biscayne Bay, as he told story after story, treating me not like a reporter but like a grandson. I will never forget it.

New England Patriots @Patriots

Statement from #Patriots Head Coach Bill Belichick on the passing of Don Shula: https://t.co/Qx6SzsGbsw https://t.co/KSARlkda4Y

Shula began his time in the NFL with a seven-season playing career as a defensive back, including the inaugural Colts season in 1953. Just six years after retiring in 1957, he was a 33-year-old head coach in the NFL for Baltimore in 1963.

The seven-year run for the Colts included three NFL Coach of the Year awards and a trip to the Super Bowl in 1968.

He joined the Dolphins in 1970 and quickly turned that franchise into a winner, winning back-to-back Super Bowl titles in the 1972 and 1973 seasons. The 1972 squad finished 14-0 and remains the only undefeated champion in NFL history.

His career with Miami spanned 26 seasons and featured only two losing records, and he made the playoffs more than any other coach, appearing in 19 different postseasons.

Shula finished his coaching career in 1995, ranking second to only George Halas with 490 games coached, and his prowess on the sidelines helped him earn induction into the Football Hall of Fame in 1997.

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