BOZEMAN – On Saturday morning, legendary Montana State Bobcat Joe Tiller passed away. He was 74 years old.

Tiller was an all-American offensive tackle for the Bobcats. He graduated from MSU in 1963. Three years later he returned to the Cats as an assistant coach. Then, in 1997, he became the head coach of Purdue and became the all-time coaching wins leader for the Boilermakers in his 11 seasons.

He is known for winning a Big 10 Championship in 2000 with Purdue and recruiting NFL-great Drew Brees.

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“He was a gracious, humble man. For all the things he accomplished, you would’ve never known it. He’s a great Bobcat, he was a heck of a football coach and even better person,” said Montana State head coach Jeff Choate. “I know he was one of the first guys to congratulate us after we beat the Griz last year in Missoula, and when I found out about that news (Saturday) it definitely hit me in the heart. And so our thoughts and prayers go out to the Tiller family, and Bobcat Nation lost a great one (Saturday).”