Legendary high school football coach Thom Budge died of an apparent heart attack at his home Wednesday morning. He was 65.
Budge spent his entire 31-year head coaching career at Bonneville from 1975 to 2005, finishing with a 237-104 career record, including a 4A state championship in 1980. He retired as a teacher and coach from Bonneville High School at the end of the 2005-06 school year.
"It's really somber. The kids don't know him, but all of us who have been here with him, it's been really tough," said Bonneville head coach Matt Williams, who was an assistant to Budge for eight seasons. "As good a football coach as he was, he was a better human being. As classy as they come."
Budge ranks second in Utah history on the all-time victories list and all-time games coached list, behind Skyline's Roger DuPaix. Bonneville won 14 region titles under Budge's direction, and he coached 62 of the school's 71 all-time first-team all-staters, including MVPs Cory Sylvester and Ryan Webber.
Williams said the school will pay tribute to Budge in several different ways during this Friday's game against cross-town rival Ogden. Bon?neville's players will wear "TB" stickers on their helmets, and "TB" will also be painted in the end zone at Wallace and Thom Budge Field. A moment of silence will also be held in Budge's honor.
Budge grew up in Pleasant View and graduated from Weber High School.