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Lou Holtz Biography

Birth Name:
Louis Leo Holtz
Birth Place:
Follansbee, West Virginia, United States
College football analyst, former coach

Fast Facts

  • Coached Notre Dame football to nine straight New Year's Day bowl games, highlighted by an undefeated national-championship season in 1988
  • Told the story of the season in The Fighting Spirit, one of several New York Times best-sellers written by Holtz
  • Guided six different schools to college-football bowl games, an NCAA record
  • Spent his last season as an assistant coach with Ohio State in 1968, winning a national championship on Woody Hayes' staff
  • Left college for the 1976 season, coaching the New York Jets to a 3-10 record before returning to campus life as Arkansas head coach
  • Won college football's Coach of the Year award (renamed the Bear Bryant Award in 1986) in 1977 and 1988 and has become a highly sought-after speaker for his folksy wit and wisdom on life and football
  • Devotes time to helping children with speech impediments, an affliction he dealt with himself before working for CBS and ESPN as an analyst
  • In 2003, Columbia, SC, renamed its winter homeless shelter after Lou and his wife Beth, in recognition of their contributions
  • Ended his coaching career after 2004 season with South Carolina
  • Briefly considered a run for Congress in Florida in 2009


  • Elizabeth Messaglia -- Daughter
  • Luanne Altenbaumer -- Daughter
  • Kevin -- Son
  • Beth Barcus -- Wife