Frank R. Burns

For other people named Frank Burns, see Frank Burns (disambiguation).
Frank R. Burns
Sport(s) Football
Biographical details
Born (1928-03-16)March 16, 1928
Died July 14, 2012(2012-07-14) (aged 84)
Holland, Pennsylvania
Playing career
1945–1948 Rutgers
Position(s) Quarterback
Coaching career (HC unless noted)
1949–1950 Rutgers (freshman backfield)
1951–1952 Johns Hopkins
1955–1956 Rutgers (backfield)
1957–1960 Chatham HS (NJ)
1961–1972 Rutgers (assistant)
1973–1983 Rutgers
Head coaching record
Overall 84–52–2 (college)
Bowls 0–1
Accomplishments and honors
Walter Camp Coach of the Year Award (1976)

Frank R. Burns (March 16, 1928 – July 14, 2012) was an American football player and coach. He served as the head coach at Johns Hopkins University from 1951 to 1952 and at Rutgers University from 1973 to 1983, compiling a career college football record of 84–52–2. In 1978, Burns led the Rutgers Scarlet Knights to their first bowl game, the now-defunct Garden State Bowl.

Playing career

Burns played football as a quarterback at Rutgers University for four years, from 1945 to 1948. There he ran the T formation under head coach Harvey Harman, completing 117 of 270 passes for 2,389 yards and 35 touchdowns with a 27–7 career record.[1] He was also a member of Delta Upsilon fraternity.

Coaching career

Burns coached football at Johns Hopkins University from 1951 to 1952 and at Rutgers University from 1973 to 1983. Burns has the most wins of any head coach in Rutgers Scarlet Knights football history with a record of 78–43–1 including an undefeated 11–0 campaign in 1976. He led the Rutgers to a 13–7 upset victory over Tennessee in 1979.[2]

During Burns's tenure as head coach, Rutgers began playing outside of its traditional schedule of Eastern teams such as Ivy League opponents, Colgate, and Lehigh. Burns was dismissed from Rutgers in 1983 after three consecutive losing seasons.[3]

Head coaching record


Year Team Overall Conference Standing Bowl/playoffs Coaches# AP°
Johns Hopkins Blue Jays (Mason-Dixon Conference) (1951–1952)
1951 Johns Hopkins 2–5–1
1952 Johns Hopkins 4–4
Johns Hopkins: 6–9–1
Rutgers Scarlet Knights (NCAA Division I/I-A Independent) (1973–1983)
1973 Rutgers 6–5
1974 Rutgers 7–3–1
1975 Rutgers 9–2
1976 Rutgers 11–0 17 17
1977 Rutgers 8–3
1978 Rutgers 9–3 L Garden State
1979 Rutgers 8–3
1980 Rutgers 7–4
1981 Rutgers 5–6
1982 Rutgers 5–6
1983 Rutgers 3–8
Rutgers: 78–43–1
Total: 84–52–2

Later life and death

Burns retired to the Twining Village Continual Care Retirement Village in Holland, Pennsylvania. He died there on July 14, 2012.[4]


  1. United Press (August 12, 1951). "Burns, 23, to Coach At Johns Hopkins". The New York Times. Retrieved September 29, 2010.
  2. "Legendary Rutgers Football Head Coach Frank Burns Passes Away". Retrieved September 20, 2014.
  3. "Burns Dismissed As Rutgers Coach". The New York Times. November 21, 1983. Retrieved September 20, 2014.
  4. Giambusso, David (July 14, 2012). "Frank Burns, former Rutgers football coach, dies at 84". The Star-Ledger. New Jersey On-Line LLC. Retrieved July 14, 2012.

External links

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