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Hall of Fame coach Roger Harring passes away

A lifelong Wisconsinite, the Wisconsin-La Crosse coach was also a lifelong winner.

College Football Hall of Fame coach Roger Harring has died, it was announced Friday.

Harring was Wisconsin-La Crosse's head coach from 1969 through 1999. His 31-season run saw the Eagles rip off a 261-75-7 record with 15 Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference championships, 14 Division III playoff appearances and three national titles.

His 1985 team won the NAIA Division II crown, and then broke through with NCAA Division III titles in '92 and '95. From 1985 to 1996, the Eagles were among the very best programs in college football, going 125-21 with seven conference titles and three national championships.

Harring's 261 wins are the 18th most in NCAA history and fifth among Division III coaches. 

A lifelong Wisconsinite, Harring grew up in Green Bay and was a 3-time captain and team MVP on Green Bay Central Catholic teams that didn't lose a game in his four seasons. He started college at St. Norbert College and finished at Wisconsin-La Crosse, also spending two years serving in the Marine Corps in Korea during that period.

Harring entered coaching at Ladysmith High School in 1958, where he went 31-9 with two undefeated seasons while also coaching the wrestling and track and field teams. His football and track teams won titles at Rapids High School in Wisconsin Rapids, and he was also an accomplished football, basketball and wrestling referee.

In a rare venture outside Wisconsin, Harring coached the Bologna (Italy) Dovers to a 12-0 season in the spring of 1988.

Harring entered the College Football Hall of Fame in 2005. He's also a member of the Wisconsin-La Crosse, Wisconsin Football Coaches' Association, NAIA, and WIAC halls of fame. The Wisconsin-La Crosse football stadium was renamed Roger Harring Stadium in 2009.