Former SMU coach Ron Meyer dies at 76

Paola Ditto
Dicembre 8, 2017

Ron Meyer, the football coach behind SMU's famed "Pony Express" and the NFL's infamous "Snowplow Game" between the New England Patriots and the Miami Dolphins, has died at the age of 76.

Meyer, who spent nine seasons as an National Football League head coach, three with the Patriots and six with the Indianapolis Colts, was known as a controversial figure of sorts - specifically known for a time he used a snowplow to give the Patriots an advantage over Don Shula and the Miami Dolphins.

Initially, Meyer appeared to be on track to turn around the team's fortunes, and was named AFC Coach of the Year when the 1982 Patriots finished 5-4 in a strike-shortened year and qualified for the "Super Bowl tournament" that was staged once the work stoppage was resolved.

Late in a scoreless game, the AstroTurf field covered in snow, Meyer called a timeout before kicker John Smith was to attempt a 33-yard field goal.

He is known for his time as SMU's head coach (1976-81) and the New England Patriots (1982-84).

Meyer spent two and a half seasons with the Patriots. That led to then-Patriots general manager firing Meyer, hiring another coach and reinstating Rust, a story that ultimately ended with the controversial coach coaching in Indianapolis.

Devastated to hear the passing of my coach and great friend Ron Meyer. Prior to arriving in the National Football League, he was the SMU Mustangs' head coach for six seasons.

Irving Fryar left poses with New England Patriots coach Ron Meyer right during a press conference at Sullivan Stadium in Foxboro Massachusetts on Wednesday
Former SMU coach Ron Meyer dies at 76

He played quarterback and defensive back for the Boilermakers in 1961-62 and was an Academic All-Big Ten selection.

Our thoughts and prayers are with Ron and his family.

Undoubtedly, Meyer's most memorable moment as Patriots coach came on December 12, 1982, at then-Schaefer Stadium.

He started at Penn High School in IN before receiving a job as an assistant at Purdue.

Meyer, a native of Westerville, Ohio, coached at Purdue for five years after his graduation and briefly became a personnel scout with the Dallas Cowboys before becoming head coach at UNLV in 1973.

Meyer led the Colts to three straight wins to end the year, then captured the AFC Coach of the Year award again the next season by leading Indianapolis to a division title after he helped orchestrate a blockbuster trade that brought Dickerson to Indianapolis.

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