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Jose Elgorriaga, former Fresno State coach, dies
December 18th, 2009 7AM



[COLLEGE] Jose Elgorriaga, who turned Fresno State's men's team into a national contender during his 11 years as the Bulldogs head coach, died on Wednesday at age 82.

Elgorriaga coached Fresno State from 1980 to 1990 and guided the team to 170-58-20 record and seven conference championships. He was Soccer America's Coach of the Year in 1986, when the Bulldogs reached the NCAA final four. During that year's playoffs, 24,783 fans attended four NCAA tournament games at Bulldog Stadium.

Elgorriaga also taught Spanish for 31 years and chaired Fresno State's foreign language department.

"Dad was so competitive in sports, yet so versatile and cultured. I'm in awe of him to this day," his only son, Jose "Chato" Elgorriaga Jr., a second-team All-America goalie for his father in 1986, told the Fresno Bee.

"He'd do concerts and read poetry while [Juan Serrano] played guitar. I remember we lost to Akron 1-0 in the final four and he changed from his sweats after the game into a tuxedo and delivered a poetry recital that night."

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