John Coatta

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John Coatta
John Coatta.png
Sport(s) Football
Biographical details
Born (1929-04-05)April 5, 1929
Dearborn, Michigan
Died December 26, 2000(2000-12-26) (aged 71)
Minnetonka, Minnesota
Playing career
1949–1951 Wisconsin
Position(s) Quarterback
Coaching career (HC unless noted)
1959–1964 Florida State (assistant)
1965–1966 Wisconsin (assistant)
1966–1969 Wisconsin
1970–1975 Mankato State
1977–1978 Minnesota (OC/QB)
Head coaching record
Overall 38–50–3

John Coatta (April 5, 1929 – December 26, 2000) was an American football player and coach. He served as the head coach at the Wisconsin Badgers from 1967 to 1969 and at Mankato State College, now Minnesota State University, Mankato, from 1970 to 1975, compiling a career college football record of 38–50–3.[1] Coatta played quarterback at Wisconsin from 1949 to 1951 and in 1950, he set the Big Ten Conference season pass completion percentage record (64.2%), a mark that he held until 1976.

Coaching career[edit]

In 1959, Coatta left private business in Madison, Wisconsin to accept an assistant football coaching job at Florida State University under Perry Moss and subsequently Bill Peterson. From 1959 to 1964, he coached a number of positions at the school. He then returned to Wisconsin as an assistant coach under Milt Bruhn for two seasons after which he was promoted to head coach.[2]

During his head coaching tenure at Wisconsin, Coatta compiled a 3–26–1 (.117) record.[3] He set an NCAA record for most consecutive games without a win to begin a career with 23. Coatta did not win a game in his first two seasons. His three wins came in 1969 against Iowa, 23–17, Indiana, 36–34, and Illinois, 53–14. Allegedly, the Badgers passed on future Michigan head coach Bo Schembechler when they hired Coatta. Schembechler was the head coach at Miami University at the time.

After Minnesota State temporarily dropped football after the 1975 season, Coatta joined the staff of Cal Stoll at the University of Minnesota as offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach from 1977 to 1978. He later scouted for the National Football League's Dallas Cowboys and Seattle Seahawks.

Head coaching record[edit]

Year Team Overall Conference Standing Bowl/playoffs
Wisconsin Badgers (Big Ten Conference) (1967–1969)
1967 Wisconsin 0–9–1 0–6–1 T–9th
1968 Wisconsin 0–10 0–7 10th
1969 Wisconsin 3–7 3–4 T–5th
Wisconsin: 3–26–1 3–17–1
Mankato State Mavericks (North Central Conference) (1970–1975)
1970 Mankato State 7–2–1
1971 Mankato State 7–3
1972 Mankato State 6–5 3–4 T–4th
1973 Mankato State 7–4 4–3 T–3rd
1974 Mankato State 5–4–1 3–3–1 T–5th
1975 Mankato State 3–6 2–5 T–5th
Mankato State: 35–24–2 12–15–1
Total: 38–50–3


  1. ^ "Minnesota State Mavericks football media guide". Minnesota State University, Mankato. Retrieved 2010-01-01. 
  2. ^ "1968 Badgers football facts". University of Wisconsin-Madison. Retrieved 2010-01-01. 
  3. ^ Oliver E. Kuechle and Jim Mott, On Wisconsin: Badger Football (Huntsville, Alabama: Strode Publishers, 1977), 215.