It’s a very sad day in the Salt City. One of the most legendary sports figures Central New York has ever known has left us, as former Syracuse football coach Dick MacPherson passed away at age 86.

By all accounts, Coach Mac was one of the most genuine, lovable guys on the entire college football landscape. He turned around a Syracuse football program that had been struggling for more than a decade, culminating in a 1987 season that saw Syracuse finish just shy of winning a national title thanks to Pat Dye’s desire to play for a tie.

I will fully admit, I don’t have much recollection of Dick MacPherson as a coach, simply because I was too young, and didn’t really get into following Syracuse football until the early ’90s. But his legacy is nearly unparalleled, as is his reputation.

Here’s a little sampling of what those who knew Coach Mac have to say about his passing, and his impact…

We’ll miss you, Coach Mac.

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Jeff is a 2003 graduate of Syracuse University, and has been published on various websites including,,,, and, among others. His work was featured in the New York Times bestselling book You Might Be a Zombie and Other Bad News. He's got a wife, and a toddler he's brainwashing to love Syracuse. Jeff's a pretty great guy, overall, and would never steal your car. Follow him on Twitter: @jekelish