Bob Andrus, one of the legendary sports figures in Delaware’s capital region, passed away on Monday night at the age of 90. Andrus had successful football head coaching stints at Dover High School and at Wesley College.
His dominant run with the Senators in the 1960’s included a 29 game winning streak. In 1967 he took that excellence to the college level when he became the head coach at Wesley. Andrus won conference championships in his first two years. Two more followed in 1970 and 1976 as Andrus earned Coastal Conference Coach of the Year honors in both seasons. The 1976 squad finished as the second ranked team in junior college.
He played a lead role in transitioning Wesley football from junior college to a four- year NCAA Division III program. Andrus coached the Wolverines until the 1987 season. His overall record at Wesley was 97-98-3.
His impact went beyond wins and losses. “I don’t want to say he had a following, but he had a following,” his daughter Kathy Andrus told WBOC. “I was always amazed the guys that would come back to him on a regular basis. They would take him to lunch or take him to Wesley homecoming games.”
Andrus was born in Duquesne, PA. After graduating from Duquesne High School, he enlisted in the United States Navy and served on a troop carrier in the Pacific theater during World War II.
After the war, he entered North Carolina State on a football scholarship but soon transferred to the University of Maryland. Andrus was a member of the 1947 Terrapin team that went 7-2-2 and played in the first postseason game in school history. Maryland and Georgia tied 20-20 in the 1948 New Year’s Day Gator Bowl.
“Coach Andrus meant so much to so many, especially our Wesley football Alumni. He loved Wesley College and he loved his players,” said Athletic Director and Head Football Coach Mike Drass in a statement from Wesley College. “He had great success as our coach and Wesley College will dearly miss him and what he stood for.”
Andrus was inducted into the Delaware Sports Hall of Fame in 2006. Below is a segment of his induction speech.