Former Washington coach Jim Lambright has died, his family announced Sunday.
An Everett, Wash., native, Lambright spent his entire adult life in the state of Washington and most of it in Husky purple and gold. After playing defensive end for the Huskies from 1962-64, Lambright moved into coaching at Fife High School in Tacoma, then spent three seasons as an assistant at Shoreline Community College, just north of Seattle.
His former coach Jim Owens hired Lambright as an assistant in 1969, and he was retained by new head coach Don James in 1975. James promoted Lambright to defensive coordinator in 1978, and in 15 years in that role he helped the Huskies win six Pac-10 championships, three Rose Bowls and a share of the 1991 national championship.
"Coach Lambright was a legend at the UW, particularly when it came to playing the kind of physical, aggressive defense that his teams were known for," said Huskies head coach Jimmy Lake. "He was always supportive of the program that he loved so much. His impact on Husky football will not be forgotten."
Lambright was promoted to U-Dub's head coach upon James's retirement after the 1992 season, and in six seasons on the job Lambright led Washington to a 44-25-1 record with one Pac-10 title and two top-20 finishes.
Lambright was 77 years old. A cause of death was not revealed. He is survived by his daughter Kris and son Eric, and grandchildren Caroline and Matt.
"I'm deeply saddened by the news of Coach Lambright's passing. Coach Lambright is synonymous with Husky football and he gave so much to this program both as a player and coach," Washington AD Jennifer Cohen said. "My love for the University of Washington was sparked during Coach's tenure on our football staff and I'm grateful for the impact he had on so many. I'd like to extend heartfelt condolences to his family, former players, teammates and coaches."
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