Former Lions coach Rogers dies at 83

The Sports Xchange

July 11, 2018 at 8:39 pm.

Darryl Rogers, whose lengthy coaching career included four seasons with the Detroit Lions, died Tuesday. He was 83.

Rogers was a head coach at the collegiate level for 20 years, including stops at Michigan State and Arizona State, before he was hired by the Lions in 1985.

That would turn out to be the only NFL job for Rogers, who went 18-40 with Detroit before he was fired with five games remaining in the 1988 season.

“We are deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Darryl,” Lions owner Martha Ford said in a statement. “On behalf of me, my family and the entire Detroit Lions organization, I would like to extend our sincere sympathy to his wife, Marsha, and the Rogers family.”

Rogers was 129-84-7 in stops at Cal State Hayward, Fresno State, San Jose State, Michigan State and Arizona State.

He had his best season in 1982 with Arizona State, guiding the Sun Devils to a 10-2 record that included a victory in the Fiesta Bowl.

Michigan State won a share of the Big Ten Conference title in 1978, Rogers’ third season with the Spartans.

“Our thoughts and prayers go out to Darryl Rogers and his family at this most difficult time,” Michigan State coach Mark Dantonio said in a university press release. “Coach Rogers won the 1978 Big Ten Championship at Michigan State and was, in many ways, an offensive pioneer in college football. I was honored to have had the opportunity to talk to him a number of times throughout my time here and he was always very supportive. He loved Michigan State and will forever be a Spartan.”

Rogers also spent one season as coach of the Winnipeg Blue Bombers of the Canadian Football League in 1991, leading the team to a 9-9 record.

He was hired to be the athletic director at Southern Connecticut State University in 1992.