One of the most recognizable and successful coaches in football history, Dick Vermeil, boasts the rare distinction of being the Coach of the Year on four levels: high school, junior college, NCAA Division I and the NFL.
Vermeil broke into the NFL in 1969 when he was named the first special teams coach in league history as he joined the Los Angeles Rams. Five years later, Vermeil would stay in LA but move to the college ranks when he became the head coach at UCLA. Vermiel won 15 games in two seasons with the Bruins including a victory in the Rose Bowl over top-ranked and undefeated Ohio State.
The following year, Vermeil landed back in the NFL as he became the head man with the Philadelphia Eagles. In 1980, Vermeil’s Eagles would represent the NFC in Super Bowl XV. Two years later, Vermeil was gone from coaching and would spend the next 15 seasons in the broadcast booth.
In 1997, Vermeil’s coaching bug returned with a chance to turn things around for the downtrodden and recently moved St. Louis Rams. After winning just nine games in his first two seasons with the Rams and losing the team.s starting quarterback, Trent Green, in a preseason game, Vermeil turned to the unknown Kurt Warner who proceeded to lead the Rams to their first Super Bowl victory.
After another brief retirement, Vermeil was given the reins of the Kansas City Chiefs, allowing him to reunite with Green while going 44-36 in five years including a 37-3 victory over Cincinnati in his final game. Today, Vermeil is back in the booth with NFL Network and is one of the newest members of the National Italian American Sports Hall of Fame.