He was bigger than PLU. He was more than a football coach. He was larger than life.
PLU football coaching legend, Frosty Westering, passed Friday afternoon in Tacoma’s St. Joseph Hospital. He was 85.
Westering’s passing caused a rumbling throughout the region drawing tweets from Seattle Seahawk’s Head Coach Pete Carroll and former Seahawk’s quarterback Matt Hasselbeck among many others. The Seattle Mariners also recognized Westering before their game Friday night.
“Condolences go out to the family [and] friends of Frosty Westering, Pacific Lutheran’s legendary coach who leaves behind a legacy of greatness,” Carrol tweeted.
Westering will be remembered for his unique coaching style that involved running through opponents but being the first to help them back up. Ranked No. 1 in the country at the start of the 2000 season, Sports Illustrated labeled Westering’s squad “the nicest team in football.”
In 32 seasons at PLU, Westering racked up four national titles (three NAIA title and a NCAA Div. III title in 1999), four national runner-ups and a record 261-70-5. Among countless other accolades, Westering was inducted in the College Football Hall of Fame in 2005. With prior coaching stops at Parsons College (Iowa) and Lea College (Minnesota) he joined the ranks of Joe Paterno, Bobby Bowden and Paul “Bear” Bryant as one of only 11 college football coaches to ever reach 300 wins. His career record was 306-96-7.
Westering is survived by his wife, Donna, five childeren, and 13 grandchildren. His grandson Kellen, is a standout sophomore wide receiver on the PLU football team.
His slogan EMAL (Every Man A Lute) created an overwhelming sense of community on his teams and is still used by his son, Scott, who took over as PLU’s head football coach once Westering retired after the 2003 season. He is also infamous for his team’s “attaway” chants about anything from standout performers, to Mt. Rainier, which is visible from the PLU practice field.
Hey Frosty. Go Frosty. Attaway. Attaway.