Well 2020 hasn’t been sad enough already today the NFL & Miami Dolphins mourns the loss of the greatest Football head coach to ever work in Miami or Florida. As a fan we often think these ICONS will live forever and forget that we’re all humans, and have only a limited time here on earth.
Coach Shula lived to be 90 years old, and in his prime he coached the only undefeated team in the history of sports. Perhaps it was luck? Had he not had all the success after one might say that. But he was a winner his whole life, and while they never managed to win a Superbowl together the combination of Don Shula and Dan Marino here in Miami is is a duo which nobody could replace.
Shula, an NFL head coach for 33 years and coach of the Miami Dolphins for 26 of those seasons, was exactly four months past his 90th birthday. He is the winningest coach in NFL history with a regular-season record of 328-156-6 and a postseason record of 19-17.
And while his family remembers him as a success at all three, Shula was recently asked what legacy he wanted to leave once he was gone. The man who always fiercely protected and stood up for his children, players and records, didn’t mention any of those.
His answer was all about integrity.
“I want them to say that he won within the rules,” Shula said. “That he had players that took a lot of pride in playing within the rules. And that his teams played an exciting brand of football, wide-open football, that made it exciting for the fans.
“I want them to say that his players loved it, the coaches loved it, the fans loved it and I loved it — when we won. I want them to say that we did it all the right way. Always the right way.”
He sure did, and with the upmost class… This man was and will always be loved in this community down here because of how amazing of a human being he was both on, and off the sidelines. The Dolphins have never been the same since he retired. That was 2 decades ago and they have gone thru probably close to a dozen coaches since.
Besides being in the Pro Football Hall of Fame he also has had success in the restaurant industry owning “Shula steak house” a great chain of restaurants. Every time he put his stamp on something he made good choices, and really had just an amazing life.
He was a pitchman for Ford cars, NutriSystem diet foods and the name behind an expanding Shula’s Steakhouse empire. State Road 874, a seven-mile road in South Miami-Dade, is named after him. He even once appeared in a government campaign asking Americans to sign up for Medicare Part D.
We really have lost a legend, and he will be missed forever… Rest in Peace Coach. Check out some of the videos I posted below of our beloved Coach Don Shula.