NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Tennessee State has hired former NFL running back Eddie George as football coach. It is banking on his name and football connections to revive the program.
TSU introduced George at a news conference with the band on hand to commemorate what the university hopes is a big step forward in football.
“Taking this job on carries a lot of weight. I have some big shoes to fill but I feel like I’m the man to get the job done,” said Eddie George, the new Tennessee State University Coach.
“Eddie George has been a winner in every facet of the game, and we look forward to him bringing that same commitment to our players and having it translate into winning on and off the field,” said TSU Director of Athletics Dr. Mikki Allen. “We are excited to have him join us and lead the next chapter of our storied football program.”
A four-time Pro Bowl running back with the Tennessee Titans and the 1995 Heisman Trophy winner with Ohio State, George hasn’t coached before. He played nine seasons in the NFL.
The announcement also means george will be on the sidelines coaching at this year’s Southern Heritage Classic.
“This is a big deal not only for Tennessee State but HBCU schools in general. Deion Sanders is at Jackson State and to have both of them coming to Memphis. and the classic in September is a real big deal,” said Fred Jones, the Southern Heritage Classic Founder.
Last year’s classic was cancelled due to COVID, but Jones said with more people getting vaccinated they plan to return better than ever. The event attracts thousands of people to the Bluff City each year.
Jones says the announcement of these new head coach hires has already had a positive impact on the event still months away.
“We’ve seen an uptick in people that want information on the classic on our website. It’s really going in the right direction,” said Jones. “Now to bring star power as far as coaches is concerned and more of an emphasis on HBCUs, it’s really exciting and I think people are going to respond to it in a real big way.”
The 32nd Southern Heritage Classic will happen the weekend of September 10.