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A legend's legacy > Remembering Bill Walsh

this is a discussion within the Saints Community Forum; By PFW staff July 31, 2007 Remembrances of former 49ers head coach Bill Walsh, who passed away Monday at age 75 … Buccaneers QB Jeff Garcia, who began his career in San Francisco: “The life of a champion has physically ...

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Old 08-02-2007, 02:04 AM   #1
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Cool A legend's legacy > Remembering Bill Walsh

By PFW staff
July 31, 2007


Remembrances of former 49ers head coach Bill Walsh, who passed away Monday at age 75 …

Buccaneers QB Jeff Garcia, who began his career in San Francisco:

“The life of a champion has physically come to an end, but the legacy of the man will live on forever. So many times Coach Walsh used boxing analogies, and in his own life he was a fighter all the way to the end.

“There are so many people that are thankful that their lives have been touched by the man who is Bill Walsh. I am one of them. He believed in me when not many others did; he was willing to put his reputation on the line in order to give me an opportunity. I always respected and appreciated that and never did I want to fail him. Several times I went to him at moments of change in my career and asked for and leaned on his advice. Even at a time of struggle in his own life, he made time for me. He gave me advice like a father would give to his son and I know that I am not the only one he did that for.

“He touched people's lives, he made people smile. He had an element of surprise about him — you never knew what he was going to say but he had your attention. I love that man like so many others do and I will miss him.

“I thank you Bill for your guidance and belief in me, but more so than that, I thank you for your friendship. I love you and I thank you.”

Patriots head coach Bill Belichick:

"One of the greatest challenges of my career was coaching defense against Bill Walsh. He turned San Francisco's offense into the best in the league. Beyond being a great offensive coach, Bill mastered running an entire pro football organization. He figured out everything from the big picture down to the smallest detail and documented it in his book, Finding The Winning Edge, which was ground-breaking. It remains easily the most comprehensive and best modern day football book and is required reading for every coach. On a personal level, I am very fortunate to have developed a close friendship with Bill and my deepest condolences are with his family on this sad day."

Former Dolphins head coach Don Shula:

“I was sorry to learn about the passing of Coach Bill Walsh. He was an outstanding coach and was a special friend.

"He was a great competitor and was one of the most innovative coaches in the game. The offensive philosophy that he installed in those great 49er teams more than 25 years ago will remain his legacy and is still very much a part of the NFL to this day.

"My wife, Mary Anne, and I were very saddened when we heard the news and we know we join football fans around the country who feel a deep sense of loss. Our thoughts and prayers are with his wife, Geri, and their family.”

Niners owners Dr. John and Denise York:

“There is not a player at the 49ers or a player in the NFL today that was not touched by the contributions of the legendary Bill Walsh. Without a doubt, Bill Walsh is clearly one of the greatest coaches in NFL history. His achievements during his 10 years as head coach of the San Francisco 49ers are virtually unparalleled in professional sports.

“While he will go down in history as one of the greatest and most innovative football minds of all time, we also will always cherish the close connection we had between our families that developed over the past three decades of our lives. It is with great sadness that we offer our condolences and prayers to Geri and the Walsh family.

“Outside of his family and faith, there was nothing he loved more than the 49ers. Even after he left the organization he still kept up with the team and offered his support.

“Bill exemplified class, and all of us in sports should honor him by striving to perpetuate his standard of excellence."

Ex-Jets and Bengals head coach Bruce Coslet, who played for the Bengals when was Walsh was an assistant under Paul Brown and served as an assistant to Walsh in San Francisco in 1980:

“He was my mentor. He got me involved in coaching. He furthered me in the coaching ranks. He was an icon of the league. … There were more than one or two lessons (I took away from working with him). I would say that his attention to detail was meticulous. The success is in the details of the thing. He counseled me, Ray Rhodes, [George] Seifert, [Mike] Holmgren. … He was a complex man. He was somebody I liked to be around.”

Falcons owner Arthur Blank:

“Everyone talks about 'trees' in the NFL — Bill Walsh grew a forest. My experience with Bill was in his post-coaching years, when he shifted his great talents and energy to a number of other NFL areas, including education. The NFL program he helped develop at Stanford has strengthened the knowledge and skills of a wide variety of employees throughout the League. Everywhere around the League, when an individual was seeking credibility or counsel, they would turn to Bill Walsh. His contributions to the NFL are countless, and he will always be admired, revered and missed.”

Falcons president and general manager Rich McKay:

“All of us who are fans of the game owe a huge debt of gratitude to Bill Walsh. Many have contributed to the game, but few impacted it to the extent that Bill did. Our thoughts and prayers go out to Coach Walsh’s family.”

Eagles chairman Jeffrey Lurie:

“Bill Walsh embodied everything that so many of us love about the game of football —his intellect, his aggressive and brilliant game strategies, quarterback development, risk-taking, and franchise-building ideas. And the way he coolly executed them is deservedly legendary. His passion for the game was contagious. All of us who had the fortune to spend significant time with Bill and sought his willing guidance will surely cherish every moment spent with this very special man.”

Bengals owner Mike Brown:

“Bill’s record speaks for itself. He was the top coach in the NFL during his time in San Francisco. During his eight years on our coaching staff (1968-75), he brought imagination and ideas to the game. He was a tremendous part of our staff, and we were lucky to have him. He set a mark on the game that is admired by everyone, and he will be greatly missed.”

Seahawks head coach Mike Holmgren, who joined Walsh’s San Francisco staff as QB coach in 1986:

“For me, personally, he gave me my chance to coach in the NFL. He took a chance on me. I was four years removed from high school, and that usually doesn’t work that way. He was hard on me, and I was mad at him a fair amount as an assistant coach. Looking back on it now, he was my mentor and then later in the years he became my friend. I said this and I meant it: I always thought, when I was an assistant coach for him and he was working and having us do stuff, that he looked at the game differently as a coach, he just looked at how to put everything together and how to do it differently.

“The minority intern program is in place because of Bill. He had a heart for minority coaches, and he wanted to make sure they had a chance. Ty Willingham [now head coach at the University of Washington] was our first minority coach in San Francisco years ago, the first year the program was in place. A lot of us worked for him and had a chance to go on and continue to coach in the league. We took a lot of what he did with us. I am glad I had a chance to visit with him recently.

“I always said that he was an artist and all the rest of us were blacksmiths pounding the anvil, while he was painting the picture. There is always more than one way to win games, but that was how he chose to do it.”

Seahawks special projects/defense coach Ray Rhodes, a defensive assistant under Walsh in San Francisco:

“He was very instrumental in my career from Day One as a football player. He gave me my opportunity in coaching. I had the chance to play for him for a year, and after that year he gave me my opportunity to coach in this league.

“From Day One he molded my career and helped me out tremendously. When you talk about the things he would do for his coaches, not only did he show you the on-the-field part of the game but off-the-field part of the game as far as scouting, dealing with player contracts, just all aspects of football he was willing to share with all of his coaches. For a young coach like myself, I can’t say enough things about him. He pushed you; he pushed you to be the best person you could be, the best coach you could be. He always had people setting their goals and their standards high in every phase of what they did in football. He pushed me to the point to where, just like he pushed his players, in reference to be the best player you could be. You want to be the best defensive back coach in the league and you have to strive for that with hard work. You want to have the best group, you want to be known as the best guy coaching that position.

“He pushed each one of his coaches to the ultimate limit, and he stayed on you about it. He was a mentor to me. I can’t say enough good things he did for me and my family.”

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Old 08-02-2007, 08:59 PM   #2
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Re: A legend's legacy > Remembering Bill Walsh

... call me whatever you want to call me, but Bill Walsh will always be Head Whiner .
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Old 08-02-2007, 09:10 PM   #3
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Re: A legend's legacy > Remembering Bill Walsh

Originally Posted by Tobias-Reiper View Post
... call me whatever you want to call me, but Bill Walsh will always be Head Whiner .

Nah,he's at least third.

1. Spurrier
2. Vermiel
3. then maybe Walsh,but he was still a very good coach.
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