Some of legendary BYU football coach LaVell Edwards’ best memories in the game came when he was a defensive coach at BYU in the early 1970s and shared an office with fellow assistant Dick Felt.
“We had a lot of fun,” Edwards said. “Dick was not only a great player and great coach, he was also a wonderful person. He was a low-key, soft-spoken guy, and a very patient coach. Had great rapport with his players and fellow coaches. Just a lot of fun to be around.”
Felt was found dead in his home by neighbors on Saturday morning when he failed to attend a granddaughter’s wedding, Edwards said. Richard G. Felt was 79.
The former BYU player and coach and professional football all-star died the morning of the BYU-San Jose State football game almost exactly 50 years after he ran for four touchdowns in one quarter against San Jose State (Nov. 8, 1952) to set a BYU record that still stands.
After graduating from Lehi High School, Felt played halfback and defensive back for BYU and was inducted into the BYU Athletic Hall of Fame in 1977 as a player. After serving in the Air Force and making the All-Service Football Team, Felt played professionally for seven years for the New York Titans and Boston Patriots in the American Football League (AFL) and was an all-star in 1961 and ‘62. He played for Boston in the 1963 AFL championship game, a loss to San Diego.
Felt coached BYU’s secondary from 1968-93 and also served as the school’s defensive coordinator for most of that time. He missed half of the 1990 season following heart surgery, but returned to coach three more seasons.
“He was one of the best technicians I have ever been around in coaching,” Edwards said. “He really knew the game.”
Felt was inducted into the Utah Sports Hall of Fame in 1986.
Tribune columnist Kurt Kragthorpe contributed to this report.