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Vince Dooley Cause of Death: Georgia Football Coach Vince Dooley Dead at 90

The legendary football coach of Georgia Bulldogs, Vince Dooley died on Friday afternoon. The coach, who dubbed himself a professor and led Georgia to a long-time triumph that included the 1980 national championship, died peacefully at home at the age of 90. 

Georgia Football Coach Vince Dooley Dead at 90

The school announced that Vince Dooley died at his Athens home in the presence of his family- wife, Barbara, and their four children. One of his sons, Derek Dooley, is also following his father’s career pathways by being a head coach himself. Derek Dooley was a former coach for Tennessee. 

Earlier this month, Vince Dooley was hospitalized due to COVID-19, but the doctors pronounced he was fully recovered from what was described as a mild case caused by the virus. In fact, Vince Dooley was also ready to attend his regular book signing session which was prior to the Oct. 15 game with Vanderbilt. 

Vince Dooley

From 1964 to 1988, Vince Dooley created a career record while coaching the Georgia Bulldogs with 20 bowl games, 6 Southeastern Conference titles, and just a single losing season. 

Following the demise, current Kirby Smart said, “Our family is heavily broken by the news of Coach Vince Dooley death.” He further added, “He (Dooley) was one of a kind with an unparalleled passion for UGAI.”

Doolie’s death was announced just one day before his Buldogers were asked to face one of their biggest rivals, none other than the Florida Gators, which was scheduled at the annual “Cocktail Party” game at Jacksonville, Florida. 

During his coaching career, Vince Dooley dominated the series, going 17-7-1 against the same Gators. It was one of the highly celebrated victories of 1980 when Lindsey Scott hauled in a 93-yard touchdown in the closing minute. It led Georgia to own its first and foremost consensus national title. 

Vince Dooley

After that, Vince Dooley also witnessed another championship when Georgia dethroned Alabama in the last season’s national title match. The victory moment was also shared with the former coach present in Indianapolis to cheer them.

Doolie was a graduate of Auburn and had no head coaching experience when he was first admitted by the Bulldogs at the age of 32. It was not a popular hire and it was only a beginner. 

“My qualifications were such that even I wouldn’t have hired myself,” Vince Dooley said in a 2014 interview with the newspaper, The Red & Black.

Vince Dooley has trained Nick Saban, Bear Bryant, and Steve Spurrier and is the fourth-winningest coach in SEC history. 

He then withstood the pressure of winning at a football-mad SEC school during a time when Bryant was running a powerhouse program at Alabama. However, Vince Dooley won over skeptics using a trick play to turn down the defending national champion Crimson in the 1965 opener season. 

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The following year, Georgia took home an SEC title, but at the time, Dooley had stepped down from coaching his Bulldogers at the age of 56. But he retired after winning 200 games and interestingly he is the only one to earn that particular tag among the 10 NCAA Division I-A coaches.

“Vince was one of my favorite people. He represented all of college football and the University of Georgia with incredible integrity as both a coach and athletics director,” Saban said. 

From 1979 to 2004, Vince Dooley served as the school’s AD after retiring from coaching. Also, the Stanford Stadium field was dedicated in his honor during the football season in 2019. The school’s current athlete, Josh Brooks states that the big-money event that he now guides was only the fruit of what Vince Dooley had sowed. 

Vince Dooley

In the past two weeks, Doolie is the second prominent member to die in Georgia’s storied football history. It was the Hall of Famer Charlie Trippi, who died at the age of 100 on Oct. 19. In the 1940s, Trippi starred at Georgia and went on to claim an NFL Championship. It’s a great loss to the team as a whole. 

Hershel Walker, who is now running for the US Senate, tweeted a snap of him and Vince Dooley on the field at Atlanta’s Mercedes- Benz Stadium. The picture was clicked before Georgia’s season-opening victory against Oregon. 

Below the picture, Walker wrote, “Thank you, Coach Vince Dooley, for being the greatest man I have known. You mean more to me than you’ll ever know.”

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