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Don Coryell, longtime San Diego Charger coach and offensive specialist, dies at 85

July 1, 2010 |  8:27 pm

CoryellDon Coryell, the longtime football coach for the NFL's San Diego Chargers who was known as Air Coryell for his innovations to offensive schemes, died Thursday at Grossmont Hospital in La Mesa after a long illness, the team announced. He was 85.

Coryell, who also coached at Whittier College and San Diego State University, won more than 100 games at both the professional and the collegiate level.

He was the Chargers' coach from 1978 to 1986, leading them to the playoffs from 1979 to 1982. He was named NFL Coach of the Year in 1979. Previously he coached the St. Louis Cardinals from 1973 to 1977.

Click here to read the Don Coryell obituary by Times Staff Writer Sam Farmer.

-- Claire Noland

Photo: San Diego Chargers Coach Don Coryell in 1985. Credit: George Rose / Getty Images