Legendary Coach, Akron Native, Ara Parseghian Has Died

Ara Parseghian by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

(South Bend, IN) — Ara Parseghian, the Akron native who took over a foundering Notre Dame football program and restored it to glory with two national championships in 11 seasons, has died. He was 94.

University of Notre Dame President Rev. John Jenkins announced in a statement that Parseghian died at home at 1:30 a.m. Wednesday.

Parseghian had recently returned to his home in Granger, Indiana, after spending more than a week in a nursing care facility in South Bend, Indiana. He was treated for an infection in his surgically repaired hip.

Parseghian and the Irish won titles in 1966 and 1973, but he abruptly retired after the 1974 season at age 51 with a record of 95-17-4.

Parseghian was born in Akron in 1923.  After playing college football at Miami University, Parseghian played halfback for the Cleveland Browns in the All-America Football Conference in 1948 and 1949.  His career with the Browns ended when he suffered a hip injury. 

That's when Parseghian went into coaching.  He was hired by Woody Hayes as an assistant coach at Miami, becoming head coach when Hayes left for Ohio State.  Parseghian later was head coach at Northwestern, and in 1964, he was hired as head coach at Notre Dame.

(Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

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