COLUMBUS, Ohio (WTVN)--The family of Earle Bruce has confirmed that the former Ohio State Football Coach passed away Friday at age 87.
Bruce was a member of the football team in 1950 and 1951, before an injury ended his playing career. His coaching career began at the high school level, including a stint at Massillon.
He was hired as an assistant at Ohio State in 1966. He went on to become Head Coach at Tampa and Iowa State before returning to coach the Buckeyes in 1979, following the firing of "Woody" Hayes.
He compiled an 81-26-1 record at Ohio State, before he was fired in the week leading up to the Michigan game in 1987. The players, in support of their former coach, took the field in Ann Arbor wearing headbands sporting his name, EARLE, and beat the Wolverines 23-20.
Two coaches that succeeded him at Ohio State, Jim Tressel and Urban Meyer, served under Bruce as assistants.
Bruce joined 610-WTVN's Best Buckeye Coverage in 1997, bringing his personal brand of motivational and tough talk to loyal Buckeye fans.
In 2017, Earle's family revealed he was being treated for Alzheimer's Disease, a condition which also took his father and sister. In 2015, 610-WTVN, along with the Earle and Jean Bruce Fund for Alzheimer's Research, started the "Athletes Against Alzheimer's Radiothon" to raise money for the program to combat the disease at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center.
Funeral arrangements are pending.