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Football

Former Irish football player, head coach Terry Brennan dies at 93

| Wednesday, September 8, 2021

Terry Brennan, former Notre Dame football player and head coach, has died at the age of 93.

Brennan was on the 1946 and 1947 Championship teams led by Notre Dame legend Frank Leahy, and is known for having played in the “Game of the Century” matchup against Army that ended in a scoreless tie.

He also helped achieve one of the greatest upset victories in Notre Dame history: He coached the 1957 team — named the “Comeback Comets” — that ended Oklahoma’s 47-game winning streak.

Courtesy of Notre Dame Athletics

After his time at Notre Dame, Brennan was drafted in the fifth round of the 1949 NFL Draft, but chose to start a career as a coach instead. He would go on to coach at Mount Carmel High School in Chicago, Illinois, and eventually Notre Dame.

His career as Irish head coach started out with a defining victory over Texas in 1954, skyrocketing Notre Dame to the top ranking. They delivered Texas’ first shutout in 77 games. Brennan would then consistently achieve top-15 rankings during his time at the helm; the one year he did not, Paul Hornung won the fifth of seven Heisman Trophies brought home to South Bend.

Brennan is survived by his six children, 25 grandchildren and 32 great grandchildren.

Saints Faith, Hope & Charity Catholic Church in Winnetka, Illinois, will hold a Mass at 11 a.m. on Friday in order to commemorate Brennan and his legacy.

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