Sad to note the passing of former Williams Coach Dennis Fryzel.

0002285100-01i-1_141148Dennis Fryzel had three careers spanning 45 years. But to those who knew him, he was, simply, Coach.

Mr. Fryzel was a college and professional football coach for 20 years, working with the likes of Bill Parcells, Nick Saban and Earle Bruce. He coached at Columbia University, Williams College, Air Force Academy, Syracuse University, University of Tampa and Ohio State University. He even did a stint with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

“He loved the game and he loved kids,” said Gayle Wood Fryzel, his wife of 44 years. “He loved knocking heads on Saturdays with the other team, trying to outsmart them.”

Vin Hoover played for Coach at the University of Tampa 1973-74. Initially the defensive coordinator, Mr. Fryzel became head coach at the age of 30.

Mr. Hoover said Coach was intense. He paced back and forth on the field. He yelled. He butted heads with players. And if he had to show an athlete how to tackle, he’d demonstrate — without gear.

Sounds like my kind of coach. I believe that Fryzel was at Williams in the early 70s. Here is the only reference to him that I could find at Williams.

Perhaps the greatest impact of Towne Field House was the growth of the winter track and field program at Williams. Coach Denny Fryzel told the Williams Record: “Largely due to our new facilities, winter track, which in past years has had 4-6 runners, will have 20 members this year.” He then called the field house “One of the finest small-college track facilities in the East.” The first indoor track meet ever held at Williams took place on January 27, 1972. Union College triumphed with a score of 56 points, followed by host Williams with 53.

Did any readers play for Coach Fryzel? Tell us your stories.

Condolences to all.

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