Former Alabama, NFL coach Perkins dies at 79
Ray Perkins, who succeeded legendary coach Paul “Bear” Bryant at Alabama, died at his home on Wednesday morning in Northport, Ala. He was 79.
Perkins’ family told AL.com that he was “dealing with heart issues for the past couple of years.”
Perkins took over at Alabama in 1983 and coached the Crimson Tide for four seasons.
His teams went 32-15-1 over that span, including 3-0 in bowl games. He left Alabama to take over as coach of the NFL’s Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Before joining Alabama, Perkins was head coach of the New York Giants, where he hired Bill Parcells, Bill Belichick and Romeo Crennel as assistants. Parcells replaced Perkins as head coach of the Giants when he left.
Perkins was a wide receiver for the Crimson Tide in college, helping Alabama win national titles in 1964 and 1965 and being named team captain as a senior in 1966. Those teams went a combined 30-2-1.
He went on to play for the Baltimore Colts from 1967-71 before moving on to a coaching career.
Perkins spent the 1973 season as an assistant at Mississippi State, but was coaching wide receivers with the New England Patriots just one season later. In 1978, he joined the San Diego Chargers as offensive coordinator, then left after one season to take the head coaching job with the Giants.
His final coaching job was with Jones County Junior College in Mississippi, from 2011-2013.
–Field Level Media