"His legacy will always be the cornerstone of the Arizona State football program", Sun Devils coach Todd Graham said in a statement. Lengyel was the inspiration for the film, "We Are Marshall", in which he is portrayed by actor Matthew McConaughy.
Frank Kush, the fearsome coach who transformed Arizona State from a backwater football program into a powerhouse, died Thursday.
Arizona State unveiled a stature of Kush outside Sun Devil Stadium in 1997. Three seasons later, on December 22, 1957, Kush became the 15th football coach in Arizona State history.
"Frank Kush is Sun Devil football", said ASU Vice President for University Athletics Ray Anderson. He was an All-American defensive lineman at Michigan State in 1952, when the Spartans won the national title.
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A university spokesman confirmed the death to the Arizona Republic, but other details were not immediately available.
Kush was born on January 20, 1929 in Windber, Pa., eventually going on to play on the Rambler football team during the 1940's and then on to attend Michigan State University, where he became a star football player. He was named national coach of the year in 1975, when Arizona State went 12-0 and gained the No. 2 national ranking.
A Civil Court jury in the Rutledge case found in favor of Kush and the university in 1981, but by then Kush was getting ready to coach the Hamilton Tiger-Cats of the Canadian Football League. The cause was complications from dementia, a son, Dan Kush, told the newspaper. That includes a 6-1 mark in bowl games, including four Fiesta Bowl victories in five years beginning in 1971. He also coached the Arizona Outlaws in the USFL in 1985.
Kush returned to ASU 21 years after his coaching career ended to serve as a special assistant to the athletic director and an ambassador for ASU athletics. Coach, you will be missed.
Longtime college football and NFL head coach Frank Kush has passed away.