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Jim Fassel
Date of birth August 31, 1949 (1949-08-31) (age 60)
Place of birth Anaheim, California
Position(s) Head coach
College Long Beach State
Awards 1997 NFL Coach of the Year
Career record 58-53-1 (Regular Season)
2-3 (Postseason)
60-56-1 (Overall)
2000 NFC Championship

2009 UFL Championship

Coaching stats Pro Football Reference
Coaching stats DatabaseFootball
Team(s) as a player
Long Beach State
Houston Oilers*
The Hawaiians (WFL)
*Inactive and/or practice squad member only
Team(s) as a coach/administrator









Stanford University
(Assistant Coach)
New Orleans Breakers
(Offensive Coordinator)
Utah Utes
(Head Coach)
New York Giants
(QB Coach/Off. Coordinator)
Denver Broncos
(Offensive Coordinator)
Oakland Raiders
(Quarterbacks Coach)
Arizona Cardinals
(Offensive Coordinator)
New York Giants
(Head Coach)
Baltimore Ravens
(Offensive Coordinator)
Las Vegas Locomotives
(Head Coach)

James Edward "Jim" Fassel (born August 31, 1949 in Anaheim, California) is the head coach for the Las Vegas Locomotives of the United Football League.




Playing career

Early life and education

Fassel played high school football for the legendary coach Clare Van Hoorebeke at Anaheim High School, where his father was the equipment manager.

College/professional career

Fassel played quarterback at California State University, Long Beach after playing at USC in 1969. He was drafted in the 7th round by the Chicago Bears in the 1972 NFL Draft. He played briefly with The Hawaiians of the WFL in 1974, and became an assistant coach during the 1974 WFL season when the team brought New York Giants quarterback Randy Johnson in from the NFL. He left the WFL after the '74 season, and was working in air conditioning in Utah when the Hawaiians needed a quarterback late in the 1975 season. He played in the final game of the WFL for the Hawaiians, throwing the last pass in the league's history as the WFL folded three days later on October 22, 1975. Jim Fassel's total passing stats with the Hawaiians for 1974 and 1975 were 16 completions out of 39 attempts for 205 yards. He did not throw any touchdowns and was intercepted four times.

Coaching career

Before 1998

Fassel began his career with assistant coaching stints at Utah State University and Stanford University, working with John Elway at Stanford. He also served as head coach of Utah.

Fassel has a long record of offensive success. He tutored prominent quarterbacks Phil Simms and John Elway. Prior to becoming New York Giants head coach, Fassel served as an assistant coach with the Arizona Cardinals, Denver Broncos, New York Giants, and Oakland Raiders. Jim Fassel's first pro coaching job was with the Hawaiians of the World Football League in 1974. He played QB and then moved to the sidelines. Fassel was an offensive assistant coach under Mike Giddings.

New York Giants

During Fassel's time as Giants head coach, his teams were known for numerous post-season runs in December and for winning big games, such as against the previously undefeated Denver Broncos in 1998. In 1997, he was named NFL coach of the year. He resurrected the career of quarterback Kerry Collins and received acclaim for his "playoff guarantee" in the 2000 season, during which he led the Giants to an improbable Super Bowl appearance.

However, his legacy as head coach for the Giants is mixed. Fassel's Giants were known for their disappointments against inferior teams in the regular season, as well as in the playoffs. The most notable loss was a shocking 39-38 loss to the San Francisco 49ers in the 2002 postseason, in which they blew a 38-14 third quarter lead. During the 2003 season, injuries decimated the Giants and he was fired amidst some controversy.

While coaching for the Giants, Fassel resided in Ho-Ho-Kus, New Jersey.[1]

Baltimore Ravens

Critics of Fassel have pointed to his lack of success after two seasons with the Ravens, in 2004 and 2005. During that time, the Ravens ranked near the bottom of the league in offense.

On October 17, 2006, Fassel was fired as offensive coordinator for the Ravens.[2]

Coaching prospects

On January 23, 2008, it was reported in that Jim Fassel was the leading candidate for the Washington Redskins' head-coaching position which opened up as a result of Joe Gibbs' retirement for the second time in that position. However, on February 9, 2008, Jim Zorn was hired as the new Redskins' head coach.

It is believed that Fassel was also in contention for the position in 2004, but when Gibbs agreed to come out of retirement, team owner Dan Snyder hired the Hall of Fame three-time Super Bowl winner.

Fassel was shortly after turned down by the Redskins.[3]

In November 2008, Fassel reportedly sent a letter to Oakland Raiders owner Al Davis expressing interest in becoming the next head coach of the Raiders.

In January 2009, Fassel was interviewed by Billy Devaney for the head coaching position for the St. Louis Rams, but the position instead went to Steve Spagnuolo.

Las Vegas Locomotives

In January 2009, Fassel was named coach of the Las Vegas entrant into the United Football League. The Locos finished the regular season 4-2 and defeated the 6-0 Florida Tuskers in the first UFL Championship Game. [4]

Broadcasting career

Fassel entered broadcasting following his firing as offensive coordinator for the Ravens, joining Westwood One radio as a color commentator for its Sunday NFL action. He stayed with the network for two seasons, calling Sunday afternoon games with Harry Kalas in 2007 and Sunday Night Football with Dave Sims. Fassel was also part of Westwood One's playoff coverage those two years, calling various games, and worked the 2007 and 2008 NFC Championship Games with Bill Rosinski (2007) and Marv Albert (2008).

Head coaching record


Year Team Overall Conference Standing Bowl Rank#
Utah (Western Athletic Conference) (1985–1989)
1985 Utah 8–4 5–3 3rd
1986 Utah 2–9 1–7 9th
1987 Utah 5–7 2–6 7th
1988 Utah 6–5 4–4 5th
1989 Utah 4–8 2–6 7th
Utah: 25–33 14–26
Total: 25–33
      National Championship         Conference Title         Conference Division Title
Indicates BCS bowl game. #Rankings from final Coaches Poll.


Team Year Regular Season Post Season
Won Lost Ties Win % Finish Won Lost Win % Result
NYG 1997 10 5 1 .656 1st in NFC East 0 1 .000 Lost to Minnesota Vikings in Wild Card Round.
NYG 1998 8 8 0 .500 3rd in NFC East - - - -
NYG 1999 7 9 0 .438 3rd in NFC East - - - -
NYG 2000 12 4 0 .750 1st in NFC East 2 1 .667 Lost to Baltimore Ravens in Super Bowl XXXV.
NYG 2001 7 9 0 .438 3rd in NFC East - - - -
NYG 2002 10 6 0 .625 2nd in NFC East 0 1 .000 Lost to San Francisco 49ers in Wild Card Round.
NYG 2003 4 12 0 .250 4th in NFC East - - - -
NYG Total 58 53 1 .522 2 3 .400 -
LVL 2009 4 2 0 .667 2nd in UFL 1 0 1.000 2009 UFL Champions.
LVL 2010 0 0 0 .000 - - - -
LVL Total 4 2 0 .667 1 0 1.000 -
Total 62 55 1 .530 3 3 .500 -

Personal life

Before the 2003 NFL season, Fassel was reunited with a son, John Mathieson, whom he and his wife Kitty gave up for adoption in 1969. The couple was unmarried when he was born.

In 2004 and 2005, Jim and Kitty Fassel owned a Quiznos restaurant in Denville, New Jersey. Their son Brian was in charge of day to day operations. The store was sold in April 2005 but has since closed.


  1. ^ Anderson, Dave. "Sports of The Times; Fassel's Finished Basement", The New York Times, March 2, 2001. Accessed November 2, 2007. "Maybe that explains how the Fassels celebrated when he returned to their Ho-Ho-Kus, N.J., home on Tuesday with a four-year, $10.75 million contract -- a guarantee that they will be living at the same address for at least eight years, their longest consecutive residence."
  2. ^
  3. ^,0,1408483.story
  4. ^

See also

Sporting positions
Preceded by
Chuck Stobart
University of Utah Head Football Coach
Succeeded by
Ron McBride
Preceded by
George Henshaw
Denver Broncos Offensive Coordinator
Succeeded by
Gary Kubiak
Preceded by
Dave Atkins
Arizona Cardinals Offensive Coordinator
Succeeded by
Dick Jamieson
Preceded by
Dan Reeves
New York Giants Head Coaches
Succeeded by
Tom Coughlin
Preceded by
Matt Cavanaugh
Baltimore Ravens Offensive Coordinator
2005-Oct. 2006
Succeeded by
Brian Billick (de facto)


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