Former Broncos head coach John Ralston dies at 92

Jack BaerYahoo Sports Contributor
John Ralston's coaching career spanned five decades and all levels of football. (AP Photo/File)
John Ralston's coaching career spanned five decades and all levels of football. (AP Photo/File)

John Ralston, the first successful head coach in Denver Broncos history, died Sunday at the age of 92.

In his five years as Broncos head coach, Ralston accrued a 34-33-3 record between 1972 and 1976. While he never made the playoffs as a head coach, he still presided over the first winning season in the history of a franchise that had gone 48-114-6 in 12 years before his arrival.

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Ralston also worked as general manager of the Broncos, acquiring most of the talent the team would ride to the Super Bowl in 1977.

Ralston also left behind an impressive coaching tree, with Bill Walsh, Dick Vermeil and Jim Mora Sr. among the names to work under him as an assistant.

Of course, five years as an NFL head coach wasn’t the only part of his career. He also served as head coach at Utah State, Stanford and San Diego State as well high school and USFL teams. Those tenures included two Rose Bowl wins with Stanford and two conference wins at Utah State.

All of that was enough to get Ralston inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1992.

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