OAKLAND (CBS SF) — Legendary former Oakland Raiders head coach and iconic NFL broadcast commentator John Madden died Tuesday morning at age 85, according to National Football League officials.
The NFL released a statement Tuesday afternoon confirming Madden’s passing.
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— NFL345 (@NFL345) December 29, 2021
“On behalf of the entire NFL family, we extend our condolences to Virginia, Mike, Joe and their families,” said NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell in a statement. “We all know him as the Hall of Fame coach of the Oakland Raiders and broadcaster who worked for every major network, but more than anything, he was a devoted husband, father and grandfather.”
The statement continued: “Nobody loved football more than Coach. He was football. He was an incredible sounding board to me and so many others. There will never be another John Madden, and we will forever be indebted to him for all he did to make football and the NFL what it is today.”
The Raiders Family is deeply saddened by the passing of the legendary John Madden.
— Las Vegas Raiders (@Raiders) December 29, 2021
The Raiders also issued a statement following Madden’s passing. “Few individuals meant as much to the growth and popularity of professional football as Coach Madden, whose impact on the game both on and off the field was immeasurable,” the team said.
Born in 1936, Madden grew up in Daly City and played two seasons of college football at Cal Poly in San Luis Obispo.
As the head coach for the renegade Oakland Raiders, Madden became only the second person to hold the position after Raiders General Manager and original head coach Al Davis and John Rauch, taking the job in 1969 at the age of 32. At the time, he was the youngest person to become a head coach in professional football.
Madden would compile a stellar 103-32-7 regular-season record, leading the Raiders to victory in Super Bowl XI in 1977 against the Minnesota Vikings after a 13-1 regular season.
Madden would become the youngest coach to reach 100 career regular-season victories, a record he racked up in only ten full seasons of coaching at the age of 42. He remains the coach with the most wins in Raiders history.READ MORE: UPDATE: 1 Arrested After CHP Officers Fired Upon During Highway 17 Chase in Scotts Valley; Driver Sought
Health issues — largely from a nervous stomach — and a fear of flying helped contribute to an early retirement from coaching.
Madden became an even more impactful figure in the broadcast booth, entertaining millions who tuned in to NFL football. Madden’s highly animated style of commentary — frequently punctuated with his signature exclamation “Boom!” — made him a fan favorite and one of the most recognizable figures in the sport.
Madden would work with all four major networks over the course of his broadcast career that stretched from 1979 until his retirement in 2008. His fear of flying famously led to Madden traveling by bus from game to game for broadcasts.
A new generation was introduced to Madden after he became the name behind the hugely popular sports video game franchise, “Madden NFL Football.” The annual editions of the game have collectively sold over 250 million copies.
By one estimate, Madden NFL has racked up more than $4 billion in sales since it was first introduced in 1988.
In 2006, Madden was inducted into the Professional Football Hall of Fame.
Throughout his life, Madden continued to have ties to the Bay Area, living in Pleasanton and having a daily sports segment on KCBS Radio.
Just this past weekend on Christmas Day, the Fox network presented All Madden, a documentary highlighting Madden’s rise to stardom as a NFL coach and broadcaster prior to airing the holiday game between the Cleveland Browns and the Green Bay Packers.MORE NEWS: Berkeley Police Arrest Suspect In 2020 Murder Of Pregnant Woman
Memorial service information will be announced when available.