Don Shula, the former Miami Dolphins head coach who led the team to two Super Bowl victories, has died, the team announced on Monday. He was 90 years old. One of the winningest coaches in NFL history, Shula was the Dolphins' head coach from 1970-1995. He also was the head coach of the Baltimore Colts from 1963-1969.
"The Miami Dolphins are saddened to announce that head coach Don Shula passed away peacefully at his home this morning," the team said in a statement. "Don Shula was the patriarch of the Miami Dolphins for 50 years. He brought the winning edge to our franchise and put the Dolphins and the city of Miami in the national sports scene. Our deepest thoughts are prayers go out to Mary Anne along with his children Dave, Donna, Sharon, Anne and Mike.
Shula is considered one of the best coaches in NFL history. Along with leading the Dolphins to two Super Bowl wins, Shula led the Colts to an NFL Championship in 1968. He's also the last coach to lead an NFL team to an undefeated season with the 1972 Dolphins going 14-0. He has won a total of 328 regular-season games, which is an NFL record. Shula was named AP NFL coach of the year in 1964, 1967, 1968 and 1972. He's a member of the 1970s All-Decade Team and the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
"I don't think anyone thinks 50 years into the future when deciding on anything, but I remember thinking I wanted to be the best coach I could be for the Dolphins," Shula wrote on the Dolphins official website back in February. "As it turned out, looking back at the last 50 years, I'm very glad I signed that contract. We won a lot of games, including two Super Bowls, and put together the only undefeated season in NFL history."
Shula continued: "I was very impressed with the weather, the surroundings, and the fan interest in the team when I got to Miami, and as it turned out I was right about all of those things. The support we received from our fans was outstanding, and the atmosphere for our games in the Orange Bowl was as exciting and enthusiastic as you could find anywhere. That helped give us one of the best home field advantages in the league."