Good Wednesday morning, folks. Welcome to the CBS Sports HQ AM Edition (subscribe here to get this delivered to your inbox each morning). We’re going to take a little bit of a different approach today with the death of an all-time NFL legend, John Madden.
Coaching and broadcast legend dies at 85
John Madden, the Hall-of-Fame coach and legendary broadcaster, died unexpectedly Tuesday. He was 85.
While two generations know Madden primarily as a broadcaster — for all four networks (CBS, Fox, ABC and NBC) — his legacy was built as the head coach of the Oakland Raiders from 1969 through 1978. There are plenty of numbers to emphasize his greatness as a coach — for example, his 103-32-7 head-coaching mark is the best of anyone who coached at least 100 games — but it’s impossible to quantify his impact on the sport, writes NFL scribe Bryan DeArdo:
DeArdo: “Madden is one the most influential figures in NFL history. … Madden’s [Hall of Fame] bust sits alongside other legendary coaches that includes contemporaries such as Chuck Noll, Tom Landry, Hank Stram, Paul Brown, Bud Grant and Don Shula. It also sits alongside the bust of Madden’s coaching idol, Vince Lombardi, who Madden coached against as an assistant on Oakland’s staff during Green Bay’s win in Super Bowl II, Lombardi’s final game on the sideline.”
Madden’s run as a commentator is the stuff of legends. He and Pat Summerall called eight Super Bowls, most of any broadcasting duo. Their first, while with CBS Sports, featured Joe Montana, and their last featured Tom Brady, whose childhood idol was Montana. It’s one of many fascinating facts about Madden’s life, DeArdo writes in a separate story.
The famed “Madden Cruiser,” which Madden used to get to games because of an aversion to…