News

Legendary Steelers coach Chuck Noll dead at 82

Legendary Steelers coach Chuck Noll dead at 82

GRID IRON GREAT:Pittsburgh Steelers coach Chuck Noll smiles broadly in the Steelers' locker room after his team won an unprecedented fourth Super Bowl at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, Calif., Jan. 20, 1980. Noll guided his team to a 31-19 win over the Los Angeles Rams. Photo: Associated Press/Lennox McLendon

By Eric M. Johnson

(Reuters) – Former Pittsburgh Steelers coach Chuck Noll, who helped transform the team into one of the league’s dominant franchises and became the only NFL coach to win four Super Bowl titles, has died at the age of 82, the National Football League said on Friday.

Citing the Allegheny County Medical Examiner, media reported Noll died of natural causes at his home in Sewickley, Pennsylvania, in the presence of family members.

Noll, who was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1993, coached the Steelers for 23 seasons from 1969 until 1991, guiding the franchise to Super Bowl wins in the 1974, 1975, 1978 and 1979 seasons. Overall, he built a 209-156-1 record in all games, including a 16-8-0 post-season record, which is one of the best in league history.

PHOTOS: 2014 Notable Deaths

In his first year at the helm the Steelers finished 1-13. Three years later, the Steelers reached the AFC championship game and two years after that they won their first Super Bowl.

‘TREMENDOUS TECHNICIAN’

“Through shrewd drafts and strong guidance, Noll helped team owner Art Rooney and the Steelers shed their ‘lovable losers’ image,” according to a biography on the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s website.

“He quickly established a building program with an emphasis on the annual college draft to realize the ultimate goal of an NFL championship.”

This emphasis on the draft helped to build the fabled “Steel Curtain” defense and a powerful offense in the 1970s featuring defensive tackle “Mean Joe” Greene, quarterback Terry Bradshaw, and running back Franco Harris, among other Hall of Famers.

Noll graduated from the University of Dayton and went on to play seven seasons as a so-called messenger guard and a linebacker for the Cleveland Browns in the 1950s. He was an assistant coach for nine years before joining the Steelers.

Noll was a “tremendous technician in the individual fundamentals of football, which was something very important to him,” Denver Broncos coach John Fox, who coached defensive backs under Noll for three seasons from 1989 through 1991, said in an interview published on the Steelers website in February.

“He was very calm, very technique and fundamental-oriented,” Fox said. “He was not a screamer. He wasn’t up or down. I think his biggest thing is that he was the same guy every day. He was not an ego guy like, ‘Look what I’m doing.’ He was a great mentor, I know that.”

(Reporting by Julian Linden in New York and Eric M. Johnson in Seattle; Editing by Frank Pingue/Amlan Chakraborty)

Recent Headlines

in Entertainment

This weekend’s celebrity birthdays

bisset

See who will be blowing out the candles on birthday cake this weekend.

in Music

CHART TOPPERS: This week’s top country tracks

ladyantebellum

LISTEN: This week's top country songs, according to the latest Billboard chart.

in Music

Lynn Anderson arrested for DUI

lynnanderson

The Grammy-winning country star was arrested after being involved in a car wreck.

in Entertainment

COUNTDOWN: Fall movie preview

This image released by 20th Century Fox shows Ben Affleck in a scene from "Gone Girl." The film will make its world premiere as the opening night film at the 52nd New York Film Festival. The Film Society of Lincoln Center announced Thursday, July 17, 2014, that the highly anticipated adaption of Gillian Flynn’s best-selling novel will kick off the festival on September 26. The 20th Century Fox thriller, which stars Ben Affleck and Rosamund Pike, will premiere in theaters shortly after on October 3.

Here are the 10 movies we are most excited to spend time with between now and the holidays.

in Lifestyle

Docs, developers want more from Apple’s watch

applewatch

The Apple Watch, unveiled this week, is designed to be used alongside the iPhone.