Terry Donahue

Terry Donahue
Sport(s) Football
Biographical details
Born (1944-06-24) June 24, 1944
Los Angeles, California
Playing career
1965–1966 UCLA
Position(s) Defensive tackle
Coaching career (HC unless noted)
1968–1970 Kansas (DL)
1971–1975 UCLA (OL)
1976–1995 UCLA
Administrative career (AD unless noted)
1999–2000 San Francisco 49ers (dir. player pers.)
2001–2005 San Francisco 49ers (GM)
Head coaching record
Overall 151–74–8
Bowls 8–4–1
Accomplishments and honors
5 Pac-10 (1982–1983, 1985, 1987, 1993)
2x Pac-10 Coach of the Year (1985, 1993)
College Football Hall of Fame
Inducted in 2000 (profile)

Terrence Michael "Terry" Donahue (born June 24, 1944) is a former American football player, coach, and executive, and is currently a football analyst. He served as the head football coach of the UCLA Bruins from 1976 to 1995, compiling a record of 151–74–8. From 2001 to 2005, Donahue was the general manager for the San Francisco 49ers of the National Football League (NFL). He was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame as a coach in 2000. Donahue is on the Board of Directors for the Lott IMPACT Trophy, which is named after Ronnie Lott and is given annually to college football's Defensive IMPACT Player of the Year. As a general manager in the NFL, he drafted five Pro Bowlers, including three in the third round or later.

Early life and playing

Born Terrence Michael Donahue in Los Angeles, Terry Donahue attended St. Charles Borromeo Elementary School in North Hollywood, California and graduated from Notre Dame High School in Sherman Oaks. He then played at UCLA as a 195-pound defensive tackle on the 1966 Rose Bowl-winning team.

Coaching career

After graduating, Donahue became an assistant coach at the University of Kansas under Pepper Rodgers. In 1971, he returned to UCLA when Rodgers became the head coach there. When Rodgers left, remained as an assistant under Dick Vermeil before succeeding Vermeil as the head coach in 1976.

Donahue has the most conference wins of any coach in Pacific-10 Conference history (98) and also the most wins in UCLA Bruins football history (151). He compiled a record of 8–4–1 in bowl games and was the first coach to win a bowl game in seven consecutive seasons. His UCLA teams won or shared five Pacific-10 Conference championships and won three Rose Bowls (1983, 1984, and 1986). Donahue's record was 10–9–1 against USC in the UCLA–USC rivalry. His teams won four New Year's Day bowl games in a row from 1983 to 1986. Donahue was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 2000.

In 1998, Donahue was offered an opportunity to coach the Dallas Cowboys. He would have re-united with former UCLA quarterback Troy Aikman. Donahue turned down Cowboys owner Jerry Jones at the final minute.[1] The job instead went to Chan Gailey.

Broadcasting and executive career

Donahue was the lead college football analyst for CBS Sports from 1996 to 1998.

Donahue was the hand-picked successor to Bill Walsh as general manager of the San Francisco 49ers (2001–2005). During his first two years in San Francisco, Donahue served as Director of Player Personnel under Walsh. When Walsh retired in 2001, Donahue was elevated to the position of General Manager which he held for four seasons.

In 2006, Donahue became a game analyst for the NFL on Fox and has worked on their Bowl Championship Series coverage as well. He currently serves as an analyst on College Football Now on NFL Network. He is also an analyst for Dial Global.

Awards and honors

  • Rose Bowl Hall of Fame (1997)
  • College Football Hall of Fame (2000)
  • UCLA Athletic Hall of Fame (2001)
  • Sun Bowl Hall of Fame (2005)
  • UCLA Alumnus of the Year (2008)
  • November 17, 2012 – The Rose Bowl press box will be known as the Terry Donahue Pavilion in the fall, 2013[2]
  • October 12, 2013 – The Terry Donahue Pavilion is officially dedicated

Head coaching record

Year Team Overall ConferenceStanding Bowl/playoffs Coaches# AP°
UCLA Bruins (Pacific-8/Pacific-10 Conference) (1976–1995)
1976 UCLA 9–2–16–12ndL Liberty1515
1977 UCLA 7–4[n 1]5–2[n 1]T–2nd
1978 UCLA 8–3–16–22ndT Fiesta1214
1979 UCLA 5–63–47th
1980 UCLA 9–25–22nd[n 2]1413
1981 UCLA 7–4–15–2–1T–4thL Bluebonnet
1982 UCLA 10–1–15–1–11stW Rose55
1983 UCLA 7–4–16–1–11stW Rose1317
1984 UCLA 9–35–2T–3rdW Fiesta109
1985 UCLA 9–2–16–21stW Rose67
1986 UCLA 8–3–15–2–1T–2ndW Freedom1414
1987 UCLA 10–27–1T–1stW Aloha119
1988 UCLA 10–26–22ndW Cotton66
1989 UCLA 3–7–12–5–19th
1990 UCLA 5–64–4T–6th
1991 UCLA 9–36–2T–2ndW John Hancock1819
1992 UCLA 6–53–58th
1993 UCLA 8–46–2T–1stL Rose1718
1994 UCLA 5–63–5T–5th
1995 UCLA 7–54–4T–5thL Aloha
UCLA: 151–74–898–51–5
      National championship         Conference title         Conference division title or championship game berth

Coaching tree

Assistant coaches under Terry Donahue who became NCAA or NFL head coaches:


  1. 1 2 UCLA later forfeited seven games, five of which were in conference, in 1977 due to an ineligible player. UCLA, the Pac-10, and the NCAA still credit Donahue with all on-field wins.
  2. UCLA was ineligible for post-season play in 1980 due to probation.


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