FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – Former Patriots CEO Sam Jankovich passed away on Wednesday, October 30 at the age of 85.
Jankovich was named Chief Executive Officer of the Patriots on Dec. 20, 1990, following a seven-year tenure at the University of Miami, where he was in charge of a program that that won seven national championships, including three in football (1983, 1987 and 1989).
Because of his extensive background in collegiate athletics, NFL Commissioner Paul Tagliabue named Jankovich chairman of the league's College Relations Committee.
Prior to going to Miami, Jankovich served as the athletic director at Washington State University. Jankovich's coaching experience included four seasons as head assistant football coach and defensive coordinator at Washington State. He also served as an assistant football coach for three seasons at Montana State.
Jankovich was born on Sept. 10, 1934, in Butte, Montana. While at Butte High School, Jankovich met Patrica Mullins and enjoyed a 37-year marriage. He enrolled at the University of Montana and after graduation he began his football career as an assistant football coach at Butte High School, eventually winning two state titles as head coach.