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Biography

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Overview (4)

Date of Birth 4 January 1937Union, South Carolina, USA
Birth NameWillie Edison Jeffries
Nicknames Jeff
W.E.
Height 6' (1.83 m)

Mini Bio (1)

Willie Jeffries was born on January 4, 1937 in Union, South Carolina, USA as Willie Edison Jeffries. He is married to Mary Jeffries. They have three children.

Spouse (1)

Mary Jeffries (? - present) (3 children)

Trivia (14)

Received the Order of the Silver Crescent, South Carolina's highest award for outstanding community service. He also received the Order of the Palmetto, the state's highest civilian award.
Compiled a 179-132-6 record during his 29-year coaching career.
He won almost 60 percent of the college games he coached, which made him the "winningest" coach in the 107-year history of SCSU and owner of more MEAC victories than any other coach.
NFL players that Jeffries coached include Donnie Shell, Harry Carson, Robert Porcher, Orlando Brown (nicknamed "Zeus"), Chartric Darby, Dextor Clinkscale, Jumpy Geathers and Anthony Cook.
He was the first African American to coach Division I-A College Football when he took over at Wichita State University in 1979.
The only man to coach against both legendary college football coaches Eddie Robinson (Grambling) and Paul 'Bear' Bryant (Alabama).
On May 11, 2002, he was presented the Lifetime Achievement Award in Indianapolis at the Black Coaches Association (BCA) Convention Awards Banquet.
Enshrined in five Halls of Fame: the South Carolina State University Athletic Hall of Fame, the South Carolina Athletic Hall of Fame, the MEAC Hall of Fame, the Wichita Sports Hall of Fame, and the College Football Hall of Fame.
Won five Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference Championships.
Won a total of three Black College National Championships: two at South Carolina State University (1976 and 1994) and one at Howard University (1987).
Innovator of the "Freeze Option" offense.
Is close friends with Coach Herman Boone from when the two were assistant coaches in North Carolina.
Appointed Head Football Coach Emeritus at South Carolina State University in February 2010.
Currently the subject of a biography co-authored by Joe C. Farr III and Bob Gillespie of The State newspaper. The book chronicles the story of how a youngster from Union, South Carolina rose from a single-parent childhood to become not only one of the legendary coaches in Black College Football and an icon in South Carolina, but also an historic figure: the first African-American head football coach at a major NCAA Division I-A school. [April 2009]

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