Jerry Pettibone

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Jerry Pettibone
Biographical details
Born (1939-07-11) July 11, 1939 (age 80)
Detroit, Michigan
Playing career
Coaching career (HC unless noted)
1962–1970Oklahoma (assistant)
1971SMU (assistant)
1972–1978Oklahoma (assistant)
1979–1981Nebraska (assistant)
1982–1984Texas A&M (assistant)
1985–1990Northern Illinois
1991–1996Oregon State
Administrative career (AD unless noted)
1996–1997Oklahoma (assistant AD)
Head coaching record

Jerry Pettibone (born July 11, 1939) is a former American football player and coach. He served as the head football coach at Northern Illinois University from 1985 to 1990 and at Oregon State University from 1991 to 1996,[1] compiling a career college football record of 46–84–2.

Early life[edit]

Pettibone's football career started at Jesuit High School in Dallas, Texas. He earned All-State honors as a running back on the state championship football team in 1956 and 1957. He received the honor to be in the first class inducted into the Jesuit Sports Hall of Fame. After graduating from Jesuit High School, Pettibone received a scholarship to the University of Oklahoma, where he played halfback under Bud Wilkinson.

Coaching career[edit]

Assistant coach[edit]

Pettibone spent time as an assistant coach at the University of Oklahoma, the University of Nebraska–Lincoln, Southern Methodist University, and Texas A&M University. In his career as an assistant coach, he coached in 11 major bowls and won eight Big Eight Conference championships. Teams he was with collectively produced a record of 168–64–3 (.721). He was with two national championship teams. Jerry helped to recruit 20 consensus All-Americans, two Heisman Trophy winners, two Outland Trophy winners and a Lombardi Award winner.

At Oklahoma, he was part of eight bowl games and was with two national championship teams. He was part of seven Big Eight championship teams at Oklahoma. He recruited Heisman Trophy winner Billy Sims, running back in 1978 after rushing for 1,782 yards. One of Pettibone's early Oklahoma classes graduated 17 of 25 players into the National Football League. At Nebraska, he coached in three bowl games. As recruiting coordinator, he helped to recruit consensus All-Americans Irving Fryer, running back Mike Rozier and center Mark Traynowicz. Rozier won the Heisman Trophy in 1983 after rushing for 2,148 yards. At Texas A&M, Pettibone was named as 'No. 1 Recruiter in America' by Sports Illustrated. Pettibone's initial recruiting class at Texas A&M ranked first in the Southwest Conference and #5 in the nation. That class produced six Aggie starters the first year.

Head coach[edit]

Pettibone's first head coaching position was at Northern Illinois University. He was the head coach for the Huskies from 1985 to 1990. Northern Illinois recorded a 9–2 record in 1989 to tie the best-ever record in history of the school. Pettibone was named Coach of the Year for major northern independent schools by Sporting News. NIU established four school records (most points, most touchdowns, most rushing touchdowns and most possession time) and the Huskies were ranked among the top 25 in five different categories. Northern Illinois recorded its first ever victory over a top 25 ranked team when it downed #24 Fresno State on October 6, 1990. Northern Illinois also established 51 school records and seven NCAA records during Pettibone's final three years. In his time at NIU, he posted a record of 33–32–1.

In 1991, Pettibone left Northern Illinois to become the head coach at Oregon State University, replacing Dave Kragthorpe. The contrasting styles of offenses between Kragthorpe and Pettibone made the transition very difficult. Kragthorpe ran an extremely pass oriented offense while he was at the helm. Pettibone, on the other hand, preferred the running game and specifically the wishbone formation and the triple option. In his first two seasons at Oregon State, the team struggled, winning only one game. However, in season three and four, things started to click and his teams posted four wins in each of those seasons. Oregon State finished second in the nation in rushing in 1993. Pettibone was named co-runner-up for the Division I-A Coach of the Year honors by Sports Illustrated. In season five, things went down hill again, and the Beavers dropped back to 1–10. After a 2–9 season in 1996, Pettibone resigned as the head coach.[2]

Later life and family[edit]

Pettibone left Corvallis, Oregon to become the assistant athletic director at the University of Oklahoma in 1996. He spent one year at Oklahoma, and then was terminated in the wake of budget cuts in the department.

Pettibone currently works for Sooners helping Sooners, a non profit that helps former University of Oklahoma student athletes find employment. He lives in Norman, Oklahoma, with his wife, Susy. In addition to his responsibilities with Sooners helping Sooners he also has maintains a personal football evaluation service for high school and junior college athletes to help them determine what level their playing ability falls under, and how to navigate the college recruiting process.

Head coaching record[edit]

Year Team Overall Conference Standing Bowl/playoffs
Northern Illinois Huskies (Mid-American Conference) (1985)
1985 Northern Illinois 4–7 4–4 5th
Northern Illinois Huskies (NCAA Division I-A independent) (1986–1990)
1986 Northern Illinois 2–9
1987 Northern Illinois 5–5–1
1988 Northern Illinois 7–4
1989 Northern Illinois 9–2
1990 Northern Illinois 6–5
Northern Illinois: 33–32–1 4–4
Oregon State Beavers (Pacific-10 Conference) (1991–1996)
1991 Oregon State 1–10 1–7 T–9th
1992 Oregon State 1–9–1 0–7–1 10th
1993 Oregon State 4–7 2–6 T–8th
1994 Oregon State 4–7 2–6 T–8th
1995 Oregon State 1–10 0–8 10th
1996 Oregon State 2–9 1–7 10th
Oregon State: 13–52–1 6–41–1
Total: 46–84–2

Coaching tree[edit]

Assistant coaches under Jerry Pettibone who became NCAA head coaches:


  1. ^ "Oregon State Football History Database". NationalChamps.Net. Retrieved 11 April 2011.
  2. ^ "Turnover: Two Fired, Three Quit". Los Angeles Times. 1996-11-26. ISSN 0458-3035. Retrieved 2017-11-26.

External links[edit]