Former SDSU coach and ENS former faculty member Don Coryell was elected into the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s Class of 2023. Coryell was the head football coach at SDSU from 1961 through 1972 and a Professor of Physical Education at the School of Exercise and Nutritional Sciences. During the “Air Coryell” era, Coryell took the Aztecs to 104 wins,19 losses, and two ties during his 12 seasons at SDSU. He was the first coach to win 100 games at the college level.
Some of his assistant coaches have shined as NFL coaches, several taking their teams to the Super Bowl. Two noticeable assistants under Coryell’s wing were Joe Gibbs and John Madden. They both went on to coach in the NFL, winning Super Bowl championships. John Madden was also part of the ENS faculty as an Assistant professor. During Coryell’s coaching, he saw 42 players drafted in the NFL.
In 1973, Coryell was named head coach for the St. Louis Cardinals. He then coached the San Diego Chargers, taking the team to win AFC West Division titles in 1979, 1980, 1980, and 1981. Coryell was beloved by his payers, allowing them to showcase their strengths. He was honest, dedicated, and fun to play for. Coryell was inducted into the SDSU Hall of Fame in 1988.
You can read more on Coryell’s NFL Hall of Fame election here.