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Ex-WSU coach Sweeney, 83, dies

Coached Cougars football 1968-75

Former WSU football coach Jim Sweeney. (FILE)
Former WSU football coach Jim Sweeney. (FILE)
From News Services

FRESNO, Calif. – Former Washington State football coach Jim Sweeney has died at age 83.

Fresno State, where Sweeney coached for 19 seasons and retired with a school-record 144 victories, announced his death. No details were provided.

Sweeney was head coach at Montana State for five seasons before going to Washington State, where he coached the Cougars from 1968 to 1975, compiling a record of 29-59-1. Following the 1975 season he resigned and was hired a short time later at Fresno State.

Sweeney left Fresno State after two seasons, spending a year each as an NFL assistant for the Oakland Raiders and St. Louis Cardinals, before returning to the school. He remained at Fresno State until he retired following the 1996 season. His record at Fresno State was 144-74-3.

He finished with 200 wins in 32 seasons as a college coach, ranking him 19th all-time.

Fresno State plans a memorial service at Bulldog Stadium where the field is named in his honor.

Sweeney was a native of Butte, Mont.

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