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John Madden (football)

From Academic Kids

John Earl Madden (born April 10, 1936 in Austin, Minnesota) is a former American football coach for the Oakland Raiders who later became a TV football announcer, author and commercial pitchman for various products and retail stores.

Madden grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area and played college football at California Polytechnic State University in San Luis Obispo, California. He was later drafted by the Philadelphia Eagles of the National Football League, but suffered a knee injury in training camp and never played in the NFL.

Madden became an assistant football coach for the Oakland Raiders in 1967. As the Raiders' head coach from 1969-1979, he won a Super Bowl in the 1976-1977 season. He guided the Raiders to 103 victories and only 32 losses in ten seasons. His overall record, including playoff games, is second in winning percentage only to the late Green Bay Packers coaching legend, Vince Lombardi.

Madden is famous for the use of Turducken references during the league's traditional Thanksgiving Day games. He traditionally eats the combination on-air, to the amusement of much of the audience.

Of his coaching career, Madden is quoted as saying, "The only yardstick for success our society has is being a champion. No one remembers anything else."

Since 1980, Madden has worked as a color commentator on network television broadcasts of NFL games. For more than 20 years he worked alongside Pat Summerall, first at CBS, and then at the Fox Network. The pair's last game was Super Bowl XXXVI, after which Madden became co-host of ABC's Monday Night Football in the autumn of 2002 with longtime play-by-play announcer Al Michaels. Madden's lively and insightful football commentary has won him critical acclaim and fourteen Sports Emmy Awards for Outstanding Sports Event Analyst. His announcing style is punctuated with interjections like "Boom!" and his use of the 'telestrator', a device which allows him to draw a diagram of the play over top of the footage. Madden's use of the telestrator helped to popularize the technology, which has become a staple of television coverage of all sports. In 2002 Madden received the Pete Rozelle Radio and Television Award from the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

In recent years he has appeared in a variety of radio and television commercials including Ace Hardware, Outback Steakhouse, Rent-a-Center, Miller Lite, Sirius Satellite Radio and Tinactin. In particular, the Miller beer advertisements cemented Madden's image in the public eye as a bumbling but loveable personality. He had a brief movie role playing himself in the 1994 youth football film Little Giants.

Madden is the author/co-author of several football-related books, including One Knee Equals Two Feet and Everything Else You Need to Know About Football (1987); The First Book of Football (1993); All Madden: Hey, I'm Talking Pro Football! (with Dave Anderson, 1996); John Madden's Ultimate Tailgating (with Peter Kaminsky, 1998) and the best-selling memoir Hey, Wait a Minute! I Wrote a Book! (1985).

In addition to his real-world exploits, John Madden lends his voice, personality and name to the Madden NFL series of football video games published by Electronic Arts. Madden NFL is created at Electronic Arts Tiburon Studios in Orlando, Florida and consistently is one of the top selling games in North America every year.

For listeners of KCBS-AM radio in San Francisco, Madden does 15 minute on-air chat with an anchor person every weekday morning at 8:15am with recorded repeats throughout the day. Madden has aired sports commentaries in syndication on the Westwood One radio network in the United States. He has also recorded radio and television public service announcements for a number of causes, including the Pacific Vascular Research Foundation of San Francisco (based on the health experiences of his wife, Virginia Madden).

Madden is also noted for his fear of flying. He travels around the country in a luxurious customized bus, which he has dubbed the Maddencruiser. When not on the road, he and his wife reside in the exclusive community of Golden Eagle in Pleasanton, east of San Francisco. He also maintains an apartment in the Dakota Apartments in New York City as an East Coast base during the NFL season.

In 2005, Dick Ebersol, president of NBC Sports, announced that Madden would do color commentary for NBC's Sunday night NFL games beginning with the 2006 season. Madden thus will become the first sportcaster to have worked for all of the "Big Four" U.S. broadcast television networks.

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