Bill Russo has passed away on the 29th of September 2021 at the age of 74 in Asheville, North Carolina. He died after his wife Susan who died, on May 29. She was 73.
Bill Russo was the coach who won more than anyone in Lafayette College football history.
Russo coached the Leopards from 1981-1999 and went 103-98-4 and won three league championships.
He began his coaching career as an assistant at Brown, his alma mater, from 1969-77. He was the head coach at Wagner from 19878-80 and went 15-15.
Russo had replaced Neil Putnam after Lafayette went 3-7 in 1980 and immediately led the Leopards to a 9-2 mark in 1981.
Bill was inducted into the Lafayette College Maroon Club Hall of Fame in 2007 and was inducted into the Brown Athletic Hall of Fame.
Then Lafayette president Arthur J. Rothkopf praised Russo for his legacy to the school he served.
“The college is grateful to Bill Russo for his exceptional service to Lafayette and its student body during the past 19 years,” Rothkopf said.
“Russo’s legacy speaks for itself. He has positively affected the lives of so many young men, who have learned from one of the best coaches in the nation.”
Frank Tavani, a former associate and Russo’s successor on College Hill said, “He was a gem of a man and a fierce competitor,” Tavani said via text. “It is very sad news, but I am very thankful for his mentorship. He took my career to the next level after spending 11 seasons in Division III. My success as a head coach is due to his mentorship.”
Keith Groller posted on Twitter;
The winningest coach In Lafayette College football history has died at age 74. Russo coached 19 seasons, won 103 games. Having covered
a few seasons in the 1980s I remember him as a good coach, better man. He will be missed.”
The winningest coach In Lafayette College football history has died at age 74. Russo coached 19 seasons, won 103 games. Having covered @LafColFootball a few seasons in the 1980s I remember him as a good coach, better man. He will be missed. https://t.co/Nyx2l9ZFAo
— Keith Groller (@KeithGroller) October 3, 2021