Dan Radakovich Class of 2015 • Robert Morris Athletic Hall of Fame When Joe Walton was named the inaugural head coach of the Robert Morris football program in July of 1993, it didn’t take long for him to find the man that would help him build the program. Dan Radakovich was Walton’s first hire, being named defensive coordinator August 30, 1993. Radakovich helped the Colonials go 7-1-1 in their inaugural season in 1994, then left to serve as the offensive line coach for the St. Louis Rams of the National Football League (NFL) during the 1995 season. However, the partnership didn’t end, as Radakovich returned to Robert Morris in 1996, this time being elevated to assistant head coach. After 13 years at Robert Morris, and 48 years overall in the coaching profession, Radakovich retired June 30, 2008. “Dan, as much as anybody, is responsible for the building of the Robert Morris football program,” Walton said at his retirement ceremony April 24, 2008. “Any success we’ve had goes equally to him. He’s the best on-the-field coach I’ve ever seen.” Radakovich was voted into the RMU Athletic Hall of Fame as part of the Class
of 2015 and will be enshrined at the third annual RMU Athletic Hall of Fame dinner, which takes place Friday, Feb. 5, 2016, at the Sheraton Pittsburgh Airport. Radakovich, known as the true patriarch of “Linebacker U” at alma mater Penn State, left his undeniable mark at the position for Robert Morris. Nine of the top 15 names, including each of the top
2015 ROBERT MORRIS UNIVERSIT Y FOOTBALL
four, in career tackles at Robert Morris are linebackers. As well as coaching at RMU for 13 years, Radakovich also coached at Penn State (1957-69), Cincinnati (1970), Colorado (1972-73) and North Carolina State (1982). In the NFL, he’s been with the St. Louis Rams (1995), Cleveland Browns (1989-90), the New York Jets under Walton (1985-88), Minnesota Vikings (1984), Denver Broncos (1983), Los Angeles Rams (1979-81), San Francisco 49ers (1978) and the Pittsburgh Steelers (1971, 1974-77). In 1994, Radakovich’s defense at Robert Morris forced 34 turnovers, enabling the Colonials to lead all of Division I with a +17 turnover ratio. The 1996 RMU defense shut out three straight opponents to open the season, while in 1999 Robert Morris ranked sixth in the country by yielding just 15.6 points per game. Radakovich led a Robert Morris defense in 2006 that led I-AA (now FCS) in total defense by allowing an average of 228.36 yards per game, ranking second in all of Division I behind only Virginia Tech (219.46 ypg).
Independence Day Magazine (Sept. 19, 2015)