NCAAF: Grambling State to name field after James Harris, Doug Williams

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Grambling State will name its football field after former players James Harris and Doug Williams during festivities at the homecoming game on Oct. 14 against Alabama A&M.

It officially will be called the James “Shack” Harris and Doug Williams Field at Eddie G. Robinson Memorial Stadium, the school announced Tuesday.

Robinson was the legendary coach of Grambling State and was the head coach of both Harris and Williams.

“It is our pleasure to honor two of the greatest members of the Grambling State football family,” athletic director Trayvean Scott said. “These two men have long represented what it means to be a G-Man and have achieved so much while breaking down barriers that few thought were attainable during their playing days. We can’t wait to add another brick to castle of greatness they’ve built.”

Harris played under Robinson from 1965-68 and led the Tigers to a 24-5-1 record as a starter and four Southwestern Athletic Conference championships.

An eighth-round draft pick by the Buffalo Bills in 1969, he was the first Black player to start the season at quarterback in pro football history. In 1974, with the Los Angeles Rams, he became the first Black quarterback to start a conference championship game.

That was the same year Williams took over as the starter at Grambling State, leading the Tigers to a 36-7 mark over four years and three SWAC titles. In 1977, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers made him the first Black quarterback to be selected in the first round of the draft, No. 17 overall.

He made three appearances in the playoffs with the Buccaneers, then led Washington to a 42-10 win in Super Bowl XXII and was the first Black QB to win Super Bowl MVP honors.

Both men are Louisiana natives and members of the SWAC Hall of Fame, the Grambling Legends Hall of Fame and the Black College Football Hall of Fame.

The Tampa Bay and Washington franchises both put Williams, who later was the head coach at Grambling, in their respective rings of honor.

–Field Level Media

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