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National Coaches Day: Gideon Edward Smith, Sr.

#CIAA- Colored Intercollegiate Athletic Association (now Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association)

Hampton had a 5-1 record under #GideonEdwardSmith, who became the head coach in 1921. In 1910, he graduated from #HamptonInstitute. He then matriculated at #MichiganAgriculturalCollege (now #MichiganStateUniversity) and graduated in 1916. Smith was the first African American to play on the school's football team. In 1992, the university inducted him into the #MichiganState #HallOfFame, calling him a "warrior of his time."

After graduation, he had a brief professional football career with the #CantonBulldogs (#CantonOhio), where his teammates were future Olympic star #JimThorpe and eventual Notre Dame (Indiana) coach #KnuteRockne. This made him one of the earliest Black athletes to play professional football, according to the #NFL #ProFootballHallOfFame.

Smith served in the military during #WorldWarI before becoming the assistant athletic director, and then coach, at his alma mater, Hampton.

Smith remained the head coach until 1940, compiling a 97-46-12 record. He was posthumously inducted into the #HamptonUniversity #AthleticHallOfFame in 2009. His coaching tenure remains one of the longest in Hampton's history.

To learn more about Smith's career and impactful legacy:

This is part of a much larger #HBCU sports collection.

Colorized by #DeOldify

Courtesy of Nanny Jack & Co Archives

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