Sam Wyche is in the fight of his life.
The former Cincinnati Bengals head coach announced on his website that he's in a North Carolina hospital awaiting a donor transplant after battling congestive heart failure for the last 16 years.
"I am in Carolinas Medical Center's Dickson Heart Unit in Charlotte, NC awaiting donor heart transplant. If there is no match for a donor heart in the next few days, I will need to have an LVAD (Left Ventricular Assist Device which is an artificial heart pump) implanted below my heart until a donor heart can be obtained. I have outstanding Sanger Clinic physicians and hospital staff taking care of me."
The latest update on his Facebook page says Wyche, 71, is in good spirits and doing his best to keep to "stay in shape" at the hospital. The post reads:
"Coach Wyche says he "physically" had a good day today...As any of you can imagine, Sam wanted to try to stay "in shape" while in the hospital and had tried to do some "laps" around the unit. It sounds like his physicians have curtailed some of this activity because they had not exactly given him permission to do these "laps."...He states the window of time for the decision of action has not changed and he remains in the Dickson Heart Unit awaiting either a donor heart or an LVAD (artificial heart pump). He sincerely appreciates all of your prayers and says to all of you.
Perhaps best known for offensive innovation, Wyche was the architect of employing the use of the no-huddle offense as a standard offense.
His 64 wins as head coach of the Bengals from 1984-1991 were the most in franchise history until that mark was surpassed by Marvin Lewis in 2011. Wyche also coached with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers from 1992-1995. He played in the NFL for eight years mostly as a backup quarterback in stints with the Bengals, the Washington Redskins, the Detroit Lions and the St. Louis Cardinals.
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