In 1969, Chuck Noll began what could be viewed as a case study in effective team building. As head coach of the Pittsburgh Steelers for 23 years, Noll accomplished a total of 209 wins, the sixth highest record in NFL history. He holds the record as the only coach to win four Super Bowls.
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After graduating from the University of Dayton in 1953, Mr. Noll began his NFL career as a player with the Cleveland Browns. Never foregoing the desire to excel, he played ball, attended law school and sold insurance. In 1960, he decided to continue in the game and began his coaching career as a defensive line coach with the San Diego Chargers. He went on to become an assistant coach with the Baltimore Colts in 1966, and continued his path to glory with the Pittsburgh Steelers.
The Steelers had never won a championship of any kind before he took over the team. After tabbing Joe Greene as his first draft pick, Noll began an aggressive building program. After just four seasons under Noll, the Steelers won the first of eleven AFC Central titles.
Noll ranks sixth in all-time pro coaching victories with a 209-156-1 overall record including a 16-8 post-season mark. He had 15 winning seasons out of his last 20 with the Steelers and won AFC championships in 1974, 1975, 1978 and 1979.
Six of his Steelers are enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame, and Noll himself was voted into the Hall of Fame in 1993, his first year of eligibility following his retirement.
Noll carries his strength and diversity to many interests off the field, as he is a licensed pilot, a gourmet cook, a wine connoisseur, and a scuba diver. He is a member of the board of The Greater Pittsburgh Guild for the Blind. He is also a member of the Board of Trustees of the University of Dayton.
Quoted in Game Plans for Success, Noll tells of his approach to coaching: "...be aware of what is going on around you. Overlook the things that don't matter. Work toward getting better every day."
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