NEWARK, Del. Harold R. “Tubby” Raymond, one of the most successful coaches in the history of college football during a nearly 50-year career at the University of Delaware, and an icon throughout the state of Delaware and beyond, passed away Friday after a brief illness.

Raymond, who won 300 games and three national championships at UD and was one of the innovators of the famous Wing-T offense, had celebrated his 92nd birthday on Nov. 14.

“We pass along our deepest sympathies to the Raymond Family and everyone who loves Delaware Football,” said UD Director of Athletics and Recreation Services Chrissi Rawak, who was a fellow University of Michigan graduate. “Coach Raymond was a true icon and his legacy lives on among all Blue Hens. We certainly remember all the great accomplishments that Coach Raymond provided Delaware fans over the years, but more importantly we celebrate the impact he had on the lives of so many student-athletes.”

“On behalf of the entire University of Delaware community, we offer our deepest condolences to the family and friends of Harold R. ‘Tubby’ Raymond, whose legend and legacy have touched generations of Blue Hens,” said UD President Dennis Assanis. “Tubby was a great leader, a wise mentor and a generous contributor to his community. Possibly more than any other coach, Tubby helped shape UD Athletics into the excellent program it is today, one that reflects his dedication to teamwork, focus and achievement both on and off the field. We celebrate his lifetime of accomplishment and his abiding commitment to the University. He was a true Blue Hen, and he will be missed.”

A native of Flint, Mich., Raymond played football and baseball at the University of Michigan, began his coaching career right out of college, and came to Delaware in 1954 as head baseball coach and assistant football coach under the legendary David Nelson.

Raymond was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 2003 and was also a member of the University of Delaware Athletics Hall of Fame (2002), the state of Delaware Sports Hall of Fame (1993), the Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) Hall of Fame (2017), and the Flint, Michigan Hall of Fame (1983).

After serving as an assistant coach for 12 years under fellow College Football Hall of Famer Nelson, Raymond took over the reigns of the Blue Hens in 1966 and went on to record one of the greatest coaching careers in college football history.

He enjoyed a stellar 36-year career that saw him lead the Blue Hens to an impressive record of 300-119-3, three national titles, 16 NCAA playoff appearances, 14 Lambert Cup trophies, nine ECAC Team of the Year awards, and nine conference titles. An incredible 31 of his 36 teams had winning records and 11 won 10 or more games.

Raymond earned his 300th victory with a win over Richmond Nov. 10, 2001, making him just the ninth coach in college history to reach that milestone and only the fourth to accomplish the feat at one school at the time.

He coached 15 National Football League draft picks, including four-time Pro Bowl quarterback and 2002 NFL Most Valuable Player Rich Gannon, and 34 first team All-Americans and led his teams to small college national titles in 1971, 1972, and 1979.

The Blue Hens were also national runner-up two other times during his tenure. He was named national coach of the year four times, regional coach of the year seven times, and was named Atlantic 10/Yankee Conference Coach of the Year in 1991.

The team success brought Raymond numerous honors, including the distinction of being just one of two college division coaches to win consecutive American Football Coaches Association Coach of the Year awards. Raymond was cited in 1971 and 1972, when he coached Delaware to back-to-back national titles. In 1979, after winning the NCAA Division II national championship, ABC Sports and Chevrolet named Raymond the NCAA Division II Coach of the Year

On the district level, Raymond was named AFCA College Division District II (now NCAA I-AA Region I) Coach of the Year seven times, including the 1995 season, and the New York Football Writers Association ECAC Division I-AA Coach of the Year twice, including the 1992 campaign.

Raymond came to Delaware from the University of Maine in 1954 and served as Nelson's backfield coach for 12 years before Nelson, who died in 1991, resigned to devote full-time to his athletic director duties.

Called "Tubby" by his childhood playmates, Raymond lost the weight but not the nickname. A native of Flint, Mich., and a 1950 graduate of the University of Michigan, Raymond played football and baseball for the Wolverines and captained the 1949 baseball team.

He played minor league professional baseball for two years and was head football coach at University High School in Ann Arbor, Mich., before heading to the University of Maine.

He served as Blue Hen baseball coach for nine years and compiled the second best coaching record in the history of the sport at UD with a mark of 141-56. Six of Raymond's nine baseball teams qualified for the NCAA District II playoffs.

Raymond's main outside interests included golf and painting. His acrylic paintings of Blue Hen players brought him national media attention, including features in Sports Illustrated and on ABC's “Good Morning America,” NBC’s “Nightly News,’ CNN, and Fox Sports. Beginning in the 1950’s, he painted a portrait of a senior member of the team each week during the season for most of his career at Delaware and continued the tradition in 2002 after his retirement until this year.

In addition to his football duties at Delaware, Raymond was a past president of the American Football Coaches Association and is currently chairman of the AFCA Rules Committee.

Raymond resided in Landenberg, Pa. with his wife Diane and had four children, 11 grandchildren, and 13 great grandchildren. His first wife, Susan, passed away in 1990. His youngest son, Dave, earned worldwide fame as the original Phillie Phanatic costume, one of the most recognizable mascots in professional sports.

Funeral arrangements are pending. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that contributions be made to the Tubby Raymond Foundation, which is part of the Delaware Community Foundation (


• 300-119-3 career record (1966-2001)
• Three national titles (1971, 1972 and 1979)
• Three national runner-up finishes (1974, 1978, 1982)
• 14 Lambert Cups (Eastern football champions) (
• 11 NCAA Division I-AA tournament (now FCS) appearances (1981, 1982, 1986, 1988, 1991, 1992, 1993, 1995, 1996,1997, 2000)
• Nine conference titles
• Four Boardwalk Bowl victories
• Nine ECAC Team of the Year Awards


Danny Rocco, Delaware Football Head Coach
"Coach Raymond’s influence has been extraordinary for both his student-athletes as well as for the University of Delaware. Coach was able to develop and influence young people as he was building a championship program at UD. His legacy will live forever and he will be missed."

K.C. Keeler, Former Delaware Head Coach (2002-12) and Standout Linebacker (1978-80)
"Even with all the wins, and the championships, and the Wing-T offense, what made Coach Raymond so special was the impact that he had on so many people. That is the reason I became a coach. I admired the life he had. He meant so much to me in my life and played a key role in the man I became the the coach I became. I will meet with my team (Sam Houston State which plays in the NCAA quarterfinals Saturday) tonight and talk about the impact that he had."

Eddie Conti, Former Delaware All-American Wide Receiver (1994-98) and Current WDSD Radio Analyst for UD Football
"A truly great man and coach. I am so honored to have played for such a legend. He lived an exceptional life and touched so many in a positive way. I love you coach."

Dan Reeder, 1984 Delaware Football Captain and father of 2017 UD Football Standouts Troy and Colby Reeder
It's hard to put into words what Tubby meant to me. If I had to pick one word it would be “RESPECT”. Respect for the product he put on the field, respect for how he prepared, respect for how he competed, respect for how he ran the program, respect for how he motivated people, respect for how he was a consistent winner, and respect for how he was content to stay at UD even though he was offered bigger opportunities elsewhere. Tubby had an uncanny ability to be able to say the right thing to the player or the team at the right time – sometimes they were encouraging words and sometimes they weren’t always what you wanted to hear but they were words that made you think, look inward and had a way of bringing out the best in you and the team. He was the embodiment of what I think a coach should be. I believe that a true measurement of a man is the positive impact he has had on others while on this earth. Tubby has certainly had a positive impact on all of us that he coached and a piece of him will continue to live within all of us who have had the honor to have played for him."

Edgar Johnson, Former University of Delaware Athletics Director (1984-2010)
"Tubby Raymond was first and foremost a remarkable man. He was talented in so many areas. Tubby always considered himself a faculty member first (he was a full professor) and a coach second. As a coach he was creative, an innovator of offensive wing-t football and a renowned coach of quarterbacks. He was always ahead of his time and his offensive strategy kept evolving and his teams' kept winning. Tubby loved the game of football, he respected the game, he respected his opponents and he insisted that his players play the game with great intensity and as sportsman. He was always willing to share his ideas and innovations with other college or high school football coaches. He was pleased when they adopted his ideas and their teams were successful. Tubby is a legend, an icon in coaching circles. But he was honored to coach at an institution where athletics was part of the educational process. Education was important to him and he would often say athletics was the most important out-of-class educational experience in which a student could participate. Tubby was special, a one of a kind, a great coach, teacher and colleague. Perhaps he is the last of the truly great teacher/coaches, a statesman for the sport of football. He is certainly a legend. He will be missed."

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