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Johnny Majors


John Terrill Majors

Inducted 1987

Date of Birth



Lynchburg, TN


University of Tennessee (1954-1956)


Playing for Bowden Wyatt's Volunteers, Johnny Majors was a do-everything back who was MVP of the Southeastern Conference in both his junior and senior years. In his senior year, Johnny Majors led Tennessee to an undefeated season, was a consensus All-America, finished second to Paul Hornung in the Heisman Trophy balloting and was named by UPI as Back of the Year. He was a multi-threat player who could run or pass. He was also one of college football's best punters. After graduation, Majors sought a career as a college football coach. He got his first experience as an assistant coach at Mississippi State and Arkansas. He landed his first head coaching job at Iowa State in 1968. He moved to Pittsburgh in 1973. His 1973 team was the first Pitt team in 17 years to get a bowl bid, and Majors was named Coach of the Year. His 1976 team went 12-0, was national champion and Majors again was named Coach of the Year. He moved to his alma mater, Tennessee, for the period 1977-92 and won Southeastern Conference championships in 1985, 1989, and 1990. Majors returned to Pittsburgh and coached there again 1993-96, completing 29 years as a head coach. He was part of a very famous football family. His father, Shirley Majors, coached high school football 13 years and was head coach at Sewanee 21 years. He had five sons who played college football------John, Bill and Bob at Tennessee, Joe at Florida State, and Larry at Sewanee.


Height 5'11

Weight 168

Career Highlights

  • 1956 All-Conference
  • 1956 Conference MVP
  • 1956 Heisman - Second
  • 1956 Unanimous All-America
  • 1955 All-Conference
  • 1955 Conference MVP
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