Former Missouri football assistant coach Harry Smith died Tuesday morning in Columbia at the age of 94, MU's athletic department has confirmed.
Smith, who was elected to the University of Missouri's Hall of Fame in 2002, was a mainstay under legendary coaches Don Faurot and Dan Devine, as he was a part of teams that went a combined 97-63-10 and won two Big 8 championships during a tenure that started in 1941 and continued from 1952-1966.
Smith continued to remain a presence during current coach Gary Pinkel's 13-year tenure, often attending practices and functions when he could.
“I'm very sad to learn of Coach Smith's passing,” Pinkel said in a statement. “I'm really proud that I personally had a chance to get to know him over the years, what a great life he lived. He had an unbelievable impact on so many people in and out of football, just a tremendous influence on all of the people he touched.”
Smith, who was born in Russellville, Mo., was an All-American offensive lineman at Southern California in 1938 and 1939 before spending a year with the NFL's Detroit Lions in 1940. He began his coaching career as an assistant at Missouri in 1941 under Faurot, and went on to serve as an assistant at USC and as head coach of the Saskatchewan Sasketchewan Roughriders of the Canadian Football League in 1951.
He returned to Missouri in 1952, where he remained an assistant until 1966, coaching one year under Frank Broyles in 1957 and nine years under Devine.
Smith is also a member of the Missouri Sports Hall of Fame, the USC Hall of Fame and the College Football Hall of Fame.