Billy J. Murphy named to College Football Hall of Fame


MEMPHIS, Tennessee – Billy J. Murphy, the former head football coach and athletic director of the University of Memphis for more than 30 years, will be inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame as part of the 2022 class, the National Football Foundation (NFF) announced on Monday . Murphy joins Allyn mckeen, Memphis’s head coach from 1937 to 1938, at the College Football Hall of Fame.

“Our family is touched and honored that our father, Billy J. Murphy, would be at the announcement of his induction into the College Football Hall of Fame,” Michael murphy and Libby ladyman remark. “Our dad was not just a great coach, but a great man. He loved the University of Memphis, its players, coaches, colleagues, staff and the entire Tiger community. Memphis gave our dad his first head coach position, and he returned their confidence with his loyalty and dedication to the program. Our father once said that he came to Memphis to be a Tiger, to live his life as a Tiger and to live his life as a Tiger. ‘he would die in a Tiger. That’s what he did. Well-deserved old soldier. Bless God. “

The 2022 College Football Hall of Fame class will be officially inducted at the 64th Annual NFF Awards Dinner on December 6 (location to be determined).

“We know that Memphians around the world will be proud of the legacy Coach Murphy has acquired as a football player, coach, administrator and leader,” said Memphis vice president and director of intercollegiate athletics. Laird Veatch. “I have heard several stories from former players, fans and Coach Murphy’s family about the incredible and lasting impact he has had on so many Tigers in the Memphis community. We thank Mr. Archie Manning and the entire selection committee for recognizing one of the greatest Tigers of all time in this special and deserving way. “

The 18 All-America First Team players and three Outstanding Coaches of the 2022 Class were selected from the national vote of 78 players and seven coaches from the Football Bowl division, the 99 players and 33 coaches from the divisional ranks and the nominees. of the NFF Veterans Committee. .

Inductees will also be recognized at their respective college institutions with the NFF Hall of Fame Campus Salutes, presented by Fidelity Investments, during the fall. Their accomplishments will be forever immortalized at the Chick-fil-A College Football Hall of Fame in Atlanta, and each inductee will receive a personalized ring created by Jostens, the official and exclusive supplier of NFF rings.

“We are delighted to hear about the immense honor for Coach Murphy and his family to be named to the College Football Hall of Fame,” Memphis Head Football Coach Ryan silverfield remark. “Coach Murphy was an incredible leader, mentor and role model not only for the University of Memphis, but for the city and the entire South Central region. I am delighted that he and his family are getting the recognition that they deserve so much. “

Most successful coach in Memphis history, Murphy led the Tigers’ program for 14 years, posting winning records in all but two seasons and leading the school nationally. Murphy died on February 21, 2008 at the age of 87.

In 1958, Murphy became head coach at Memphis, then known as Memphis State, and he would take the program from obscurity to national notoriety with several firsts while winning 67.3% of his games before his released after the 1971 season with an overall record of 91-44-1. In 1960, he led the team’s transition to major college status as a member of the NCAA varsity division while posting an 8-2 record. As the Tigers’ schedule grew, Murphy replaced his small college opponents with major schedules including wins over Florida State, Houston, Miami (FL), Mississippi, Mississippi State, South Carolina, Virginia Tech and Wake Forest. In 1962, Murphy led the Tigers to their first victory over an SEC member, a 28-7 victory at Mississippi State.

In 1963, the Tigers posted the school’s first unbeaten season since 1938 with a 9-0-1 record, and Murphy won the Detroit Times National Coach of the Year honors while Memphis s’ was running away. Dave casinelli won the NCAA floor title and the defense has five shutouts. The team finished No. 14 in the UPI Coaching Poll, the highest ranking in school history. The only draw that season, a 0-0 incline, came against second Ole Miss, who had not been shut out in 47 games. In 1967, Murphy and the Tigers finally got the upper hand, claiming the program’s first win over Ole Miss with a 27-17 victory at home.

In 1968, Memphis ended his 27-year independent career by joining the Missouri Valley Conference, and Murphy won the Missouri Valley Conference Coach of the Year award in three of the first four. school seasons in the conference. On December 18, 1971, Murphy led Memphis to their first appearance and first major bowl victory with a 28-9 victory over San Jose State in the Pasadena Bowl. The match marked Murphy’s last appearance as head coach, and he moved on to full-time as athletic director, a role he started in 1966 and held until 1981. .

Murphy grew up in Siloam Springs, Arkansas, before enrolling in Mississippi State in 1939 and playing as an All-SEC full-back for the future College Football Hall of Coach. Allyn mckeen who previously ran the Memphis program. In 1943 and in the middle of World War II, Murphy joined the Marine Corps Reserve and transferred to Duke University to train with the V-12 program. He served heroically in the South Pacific, narrowly escaping his life on at least four occasions and receiving the Bronze Star, Presidential Citation and Navy Citation. After World War II, Murphy returned to the state of Mississippi as captain of the 1946 Bulldogs team.

After graduating from Mississippi State, Murphy took his first job as an assistant coach in Memphis for a five-year stint. In 1951, he returned to the state of Mississippi under the direction of the head coach Murray Warmath which he then followed to Minnesota in 1954 for four seasons as running backs coach before becoming head coach of Memphis at the age of 37 in 1958. Murphy was inducted into the Hall of Fame. Tennessee State Sports, the Mississippi State Hall of Fame and the Memphis M Club Hall of Fame. Each year, the Billy J. Murphy Award is presented to a former Memphis athlete who has excelled in the profession he chose upon graduation, and the Tigers’ training center is named in honor by Murphy.

Murphy, born Jan. 13, 1921, was married to the late Elizabeth Parrish of Starkville, Mississippi, and the couple had two children, son Michael and daughter Libby.

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