|Birth Day:||April 10, 1936|
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Legendary NFL coach and commentator best known for appearing on Monday Night Football. John Madden won Super Bowl XI as the head coach of the Oakland Raiders.
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John Madden played college football at Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo.
John Madden was born in Austin, Minnesota, to Earl Russell Madden and Mary Margaret (née Flaherty) Madden. His father, an auto mechanic, moved the Madden family to Daly City, California, a town just south of San Francisco, when John was young. He attended Catholic parochial school with John Robinson at Our Lady of Perpetual Help, graduating in 1950, and then Jefferson High School, graduating in 1954.
A football star in high school, Madden initially played one season at the College of San Mateo, in 1954, before he was given a football scholarship to the University of Oregon, studying pre-law, and playing football with boyhood friend John Robinson. He was redshirted because of a knee injury and had a knee operation. Then he attended the College of San Mateo in 1955, then Grays Harbor College playing in the fall of 1956, before transferring to Cal Poly in San Luis Obispo, where he played both offense and defense for the Mustangs in 1957 and 1958 while earning a BS in Education in 1959 and an MA in Education in 1961. He won all-conference honors at offensive tackle, and was a catcher on Cal Poly's baseball team. Madden was drafted in the 21st round (244th overall) by the NFL's Philadelphia Eagles in 1958, but in his first training camp suffered an injury on his other knee, ending his playing career before he ever got a chance to play professionally.
Madden met his wife, Virginia Fields in a bar in Pismo Beach, California, marrying on December 26, 1959. They live in Pleasanton, California, and have two sons, Joseph and Michael. Joe played football at Brown University and Mike attended Harvard University, where he started as receiver on the football team.
In 1960, he became an assistant coach at Allan Hancock College in Santa Maria, and was promoted to head coach in 1962. Following the 1963 season, he was hired as a defensive assistant coach at San Diego State, where he served through 1966.
Building on that success, Madden was hired by Al Davis as linebackers coach for the AFL's Oakland Raiders in 1967, putting him in the Sid Gillman coaching tree. He helped the team reach Super Bowl II that season. A year later, after Raiders head coach John Rauch resigned to take the same position with the Buffalo Bills, Madden was named the Raiders' head coach on February 4, 1969, becoming, at the age of 32, professional football's youngest head coach to that time. According to former Raiders coach Dennis Allen, John Madden was arguably the best Oakland Raiders coach in the history of the team.
Madden's Raiders reached and lost five AFC Championship games in seven years, which left the Raiders with the same image that the Dallas Cowboys had previously had—as a team unable to "win the big one." Despite a 12–1–1 mark in 1969, the team lost 17–7 to the Kansas City Chiefs in the final American Football League championship game. Three years later, what appeared to be a last-minute victory over the Steelers instead became a part of football lore when Franco Harris' "Immaculate Reception" gave Pittsburgh a 13–7 win. Then, in 1974, after defeating the two-time, and defending Super Bowl champion Miami Dolphins in dramatic fashion, the Raiders lost again to the Steelers in the AFC Championship game. In 1975, the Raiders went 11–3 and lost to the Pittsburgh Steelers in the AFC Championship game by a score of 16–10.
In 1976, the Raiders went 13–1 in the regular season, and escaped the first round of the playoffs with a dramatic and controversial victory over the New England Patriots. In the second round of the playoffs they defeated the Steelers for the AFC Championship. On January 9, 1977, Madden's Raiders finally captured their first Super Bowl with a convincing 32–14 win over the Minnesota Vikings. The Raiders lost the AFC Championship Game in 1977 to the Denver Broncos. After the Raiders failed to qualify for the postseason in 1978, Madden announced his retirement on January 4, 1979, due to an increasingly deteriorating ulcer condition and occupational burnout.
From 1979 through 2008, Madden worked as a color commentator/analyst on NFL games for all four major American television networks.
After working lower profile contests for CBS during his years, he was elevated to the network's top football broadcasting duo with Pat Summerall in 1981, replacing Tom Brookshier. Prior to teaming with Summerall on CBS, Madden was paired with a variety of announcers, such as Dick Stockton, Frank Glieber and Gary Bender. The team of Madden and Summerall would go on to call eight Super Bowls together (five for CBS and three for Fox). On occasions in which Summerall was unavailable (during the CBS years, Summerall was normally scheduled to commentate on the U.S. Open tennis tournament during the early weeks of the NFL season), Madden would team with the likes of Vin Scully and subsequently, Verne Lundquist. On their final CBS telecast together (the NFC Championship Game on January 23, 1994), Madden told Summerall that while CBS may no longer have the NFL (for the time being, as CBS would eventually regain NFL rights in 1998 by outbidding NBC for the rights to AFC telecasts), at least they have the memories. On ABC's final Monday Night Football telecast in 2005, Madden used a similar choice of words.
Madden views the game as an educational tool. During initial planning conversations with Electronic Arts founder Trip Hawkins in 1984, Madden envisioned the program as a tool for teaching and testing plays. He stated in 2012 that Madden NFL was "a way for people to learn the game [of football] and participate in the game at a pretty sophisticated level".
In 1984, Madden took the advice of NFL coach John Robinson—a friend of Madden since elementary school—and created the "All-Madden" team, a group of players who Madden thought represented football and played the game the way he thought it should be played. Madden continued to pick the All-Madden team through the 2001 season when he left to move to ABC and Monday Night Football. Madden added his "Haul of Fame" for his favorite players, he created a special 10th Anniversary All-Madden team in 1994, an All-Madden Super Bowl Team in 1997, and an All-Time All-Madden team in 2000. All Madden was also the title of Madden's third best-selling book (after Hey, Wait A Minute? I Wrote a Book and One Knee Equals Two Feet).
During his Saturday Night Live hosting appearance in the early 1980s, a short film aired depicting Madden making the journey to New York to host SNL by train. In the mid-1980s Madden was a frequent rider on Amtrak's Lake Shore Limited; Amtrak let the famous customer use the dining car at any time. However, beginning in 1987, Greyhound bus lines supplied a custom MCI 102A3 bus and drivers for three years in exchange for advertising and speaking events. The bus was originally painted in Greyhound colors and drivers had to compete for the positions. Madden traveled around the country in a customized coach-bus, which he has dubbed the Madden Cruiser. The Madden Cruiser shells are manufactured by Motor Coach Industries. The coach-bus sponsors over the years have included Walker Advantage Muffler and Outback Steakhouse. The most recent coach, Madden's sixth, was built in 2005.
When the Fox Network gained the rights to NFC games in 1994, CBS employees became free agents. Madden was the biggest star in football broadcasting, and Fox, ABC, and NBC made offers higher than the $2 million a year maximum for sportscaster salaries; NBC's owner General Electric offered to make Madden its "worldwide spokesman", and GE Rail would build for him a luxury train. After he almost joined ABC, Madden and Summerall joined Fox's NFL coverage, giving the network credibility to broadcast what Rupert Murdoch called "the crown jewel of all sports programming in the world". Madden's contract paid him more annually than any NFL player. However, Fox was reportedly losing an estimated $4.4 billion on its NFL contract for the eight-year deal it signed in 1998, and it had been trying to cut programming costs as a result. Madden's Fox contract would have been worth $8 million for 2003. His last job at Fox was for Super Bowl XXXVI in February 2002.
John Madden got his start in broadcasting calling in to longtime San Francisco radio personality "The Emperor" Gene Nelson's show on station KYA in the 1970s while coach of the Raiders. He followed Nelson when he moved to station KSFO, and the call-ins continued even after Madden's coaching retirement. After Nelson's abrupt retirement in 1994, Madden began making appearances on KNBR. In 1997, he began calling in to radio station KCBS 5 days a week (at 8:15 a.m. Pacific Time). This continued through Thanksgiving 2015, when he ceased calling after heart surgery and other health concerns. He began making twice-weekly appearances on KCBS radio again in 2017, appearing Mondays and Fridays at 9:15 a.m. He stopped making regular radio call-ins in August of 2018, citing a desire to remove any obligations from his schedule. KCBS named him "Senior Investigative At-Large Correspondent", indicating that he may occasionally call in again. Through the years, Madden often took on a fantasy persona, discussing how he ran the Boston Marathon the day before the event to avoid the crowds or even discussions about taking part in the Alaskan Iditarod Trails Sled Dog race. Madden has also aired sports commentaries in syndication on the Westwood One radio network in the United States.
Madden had a brief movie role playing himself in the 1994 youth football film Little Giants and in the 2000 film The Replacements. He appeared in a 1999 episode of The Simpsons, "Sunday, Cruddy Sunday". Madden also hosted an episode of NBC's Saturday Night Live in 1982 with musical guest Jennifer Holliday. As well, Madden was featured in the Irish band U2's music video for the song "Stuck in a Moment You Can't Get Out Of". In the video, Madden is commenting on a fake football game featuring Paul Hewson as the kicker who misses a short kick to win the game. He makes a similar appearance in the video for Paul Simon's 1972 single "Me and Julio Down by the Schoolyard", in which he attempts to teach football fundamentals to a group of kids playing a pickup game.
In 2002, Madden became a commentator on ABC's Monday Night Football, working with longtime play-by-play announcer Al Michaels. Madden reportedly made $5 million per year.
Madden was also known for working the annual Thanksgiving Day games for CBS and later Fox. He would award a turkey or turducken to players of the winning team. He would also award a turkey drumstick to players of the winning team during the Thanksgiving Day game, often bringing out a "nuclear turkey" with as many as eight drumsticks on it for the occasion. The drumsticks served as an odd take on the "player of the game" award. Madden stopped announcing the Thanksgiving Day games after he moved to ABC in 2002, but the tradition continued. Fox, CBS, and the NFL Network present the Galloping Gobbler, the All-Iron Award, and the Pudding Pie Award, respectively, to the game's "Most Valuable" player.
In 2005, Dick Ebersol, president of NBC Sports, announced that Madden would do color commentary for NBC's Sunday night NFL games beginning with the 2006 season, making him the first sportscaster to have worked for all of the "Big Four" U.S. broadcast television networks. Madden also reached the milestone of calling the Super Bowl on all of the "Big Four" broadcast networks when he appeared on the 2009 broadcast of Super Bowl XLIII. On October 13, 2008, NBC announced that Madden would not be traveling to the October 19 Sunday Night Football Seattle Seahawks–Tampa Bay Buccaneers game in Tampa, Florida, marking the end of Madden's 476-weekend streak of consecutive broadcast appearances. Madden, who travels by bus, decided to take the week off because he had traveled from Jacksonville to San Diego, and would have had to go back to Florida before returning to his Northern California home. Madden was replaced by Football Night in America studio analyst Cris Collinsworth for the game, and returned for the following telecast on November 2, 2008, in Indianapolis (until 2010 the NFL did not schedule Sunday night games for one week in October, so as not to overlap with the World Series taking place roughly around the same time). Madden called his final game on February 1, 2009, for Super Bowl XLIII between the Arizona Cardinals and the Pittsburgh Steelers. Madden announced his official retirement from the broadcasting booth on April 16, 2009. He was replaced by former Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver Cris Collinsworth.
He has also recorded radio and television public service announcements for a number of causes, including NBC/Ad Council's The More You Know in 2009 and Vascular Cures (formerly the Pacific Vascular Research Foundation) in Redwood City, California (based on the health experiences of his wife, Virginia Madden).
John Madden has lent his voice, personality, and name to the Madden NFL series of football video games, published by EA Sports/Electronic Arts since 1988. Entries in the series have consistently been best-sellers, to the extent that they have even spawned TV shows featuring competition between players of the games. Despite Madden's retirement as a broadcaster in 2009, he still continues to lend his name and provide creative input to the series, which is so popular that he is better known as the face of Madden than as a Super Bowl-winning coach and broadcaster.
John Madden married Virginia Fields on December 26, 1959 and they had two children together.
Currently, John Madden is 86 years, 7 months and 20 days old. John Madden will celebrate 87th birthday on a Monday 10th of April 2023. Below we countdown to John Madden upcoming birthday.