Today’s edition of Forgotten Coaches focuses on another former one-time winner. He has the distinct honor of taking the Los Angeles Rams to a Super Bowl. However, most of his time was spent as an assistant coach for various places, as well as internationally. Today’s Forgotten Coach is Ray Malavasi.
Malavasi had a long career as a coach in professional football. He was only a head coach for six seasons in the NFL. Malavasi did play for Army under Red Blaik, as well as assistant coach Vince Lombardi.
Malavasi ended up leaving Army though, due to a cheating scandal, one of 90 players to do so. The scandal was featured in a movie on ESPN in 2005. Malavasi had tryouts for the NFL, but was never able to make it to pro football as a player.
Malavasi began his coaching career in the college ranks before reaching the pros. He spent several seasons as an assistant for the University of Minnesota, Memphis State and Wake Forest. Malavasi had his first pro gig with the Denver Broncos of the AFL.
With the Broncos, Malavasi spent several seasons as an assistant, until he got the opportunity to be interim head coach in 1966. Malavasi, who was then 36, took over for Mac Speedle, who was fired two games into the season. Things didn’t get much better for the Broncos under Malavasi. The team went 4-8 the rest of the way and Malavasi was out after the season.
The next gigs for Malavasi were in Canada, followed by a stint with Buffalo. He then worked as a defensive coach for a couple of seasons with the Oakland Raiders. Malavasi however resigned in 1973 after two seasons in Oakland, reportedly unhappy with his place on the team.
Raiders Head Coach John Madden accused Malavasi of tampering, saying teams were “enticing” Malavasi. The charge was denied by Malavasi.
Just a few months later, Malavasi was hired on by another California team, the Los Angeles Rams. He spent several seasons as an assistant, working his way up to defensive coordinator. » Continue reading “Forgotten Coaches: Ray Malavasi”