Tuesday, March 22, 2016
Marinaro played high school football in New Milford, New Jersey, for the New Milford High School Knights.
Marinaro played college football at Cornell University where he set over 16 NCAA records. He was the first running back in NCAA history to run for 4,000 career rushing yards and led the nation in rushing in both 1970 and 1971.
Marinaro was runner-up to Pat Sullivan for the Heisman Trophy in 1971, the highest finish for an Ivy Leagueplayer since the league de-emphasized football in the mid-1950s. Princeton's Dick Kazmaier won the award in 1951 when the Ivy was still considered a major football conference. Marinaro won the 1971 Maxwell Award and the UPI College Football Player of the Year as the top player in college football. He holds two NCAA records: most rushes per game in a season (39.6 in 1971) and career average carries per game (34.0, 1969–71).
While at Cornell, Marinaro was a member of Psi Upsilon and was selected for membership in the Sphinx Head Society. He went on to play professional football for six seasons with the Minnesota Vikings, New York Jets andSeattle Seahawks, appearing in Super Bowl VIII and Super Bowl IX with the Vikings. He scored 13 touchdowns over his career.
Marinaro was inducted in the College Football Hall of Fame in 1991.
After leaving football, Marinaro became an actor. He has been a cast member on a number of television series, including Laverne & Shirley and Sisters. He joined the regular cast of Hill Street Blues in 1981 playing officer Joe Coffey until 1986. He also appeared in the 2006 film Circus Island.
Marinaro played the head football coach for three seasons on Spike TV's comedy, Blue Mountain State.
In May 2015 Tuff TV, a multicast television network targeted at men, named Marinaro as the diginet’s first celebrity spokesman.