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The Wildest Coaching Hype Up Of All Time

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By Jack Coleman

On this week’s Twisted History, Large discussed one of PFT’s favorite high school football coaches: Dale Christensen.

In 1993, Dale Christensen had what some would call “the ultimate lapse in judgment.” He was preparing his Libertyville High School football team for their semifinal playoff game against Loyola Academy, when gunshots rang through the air. 

Imagine you’re getting ready for the biggest game of your young athletic career, and your head coach falls to the ground, spilling fake blood. Forget title hopes, or how many TD’s would be scored, YOUR COACH JUST DIED.


Christlike, Christensen rose from the dead, revealing that the starter pistols had been firing blanks and that it had all been an elaborate skit in the name of teaching a message of “love of family, friends and teammates.” 

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Great job there Dale! I’m pretty sure that message of love wasn’t received, as “several terrified students ran out and called police before Christensen could call off the skit.”

What’s even more wild is that Christensen’s son Reed, a linebacker for the team, ALSO was not told about the prank and as his father was effectively bleeding out he shouted: “My dad’s been shot!” 

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Christensen left his team, his family, and students with a traumatic experience all in the hope of firing his team up before this big playoff game.

What was the final score of that game you ask? Libertyville went on to lose the game 27-14 under Christensen. Later that year, superintendent Donald Gossett recommended that the board fire him from his coaching post. Although Christensen still had the support of many parents, “He resigned before a disciplinary hearing was conducted.”

For more scumbag coaching moves, check out the full episode of “The Twisted History of Dirty Coaches Part II” out now!