Mr. Samuel Whitmon
Mr. Samuel Whitmon a native of Bedford County was selected by the Tennessee Sate University as the honoree for the fourth annual John Merritt Classic where he spent more than 30 years at the university as a student, athlete, professor, coach and administrator.
As a student, Whitmon played halfback forThe Bedford County Training School Tigers football team from 1944 to 1947. In addition to earning All-American honors, he helped lead the team to its first two National Black College championships in 1946 and 1947. After coaching briefly at the high school level and in the U.S. Army, Whitmon returned to TSU in 1953 as an assistant coach. For the next 16 seasons, he served as an offensive coach under head coaches Henry Kean, Howard Gentry Sr., Lawrence Simmons and John Meritt. Whitmon also served as TSU’S head baseball coach during that time, compiling 300 victories and establishing himself as the most winning baseball coach in TSU history.
In 1968, Whitmon was name head football coach at Fisk University. During his tenure there, he led the team to its first-ever conference championship and its first national television appearance. Whitmon returned to TSU in 1978to serve as director of athletics and professor of biology. In 1983 he was inducted into the Tennessee State University Sports Hall of Fame.