Obituary

Bill Burgess Obituary-Death; Former Jacksonville State Football Coach Bill Burgess Passes Away At 82.

Bill Burgess, a legendary football coach at Jacksonville State, passed away on Wednesday morning at the age of 82. 2010 saw the school rename the field at JSU Stadium in Burgess’ honor due to his legacy.

During his twelve seasons as the Gamecocks’ coach, Burgess amassed an 84-49-4 record and four Gulf South Conference championships. The Division II championship he brought back to Jacksonville in 1992 was his greatest accomplishment. He aided in the program’s rise to prominence in Division II, which allowed them to advance to Division I-AA and, this season, the FBS levels.

“We are deeply saddened by the loss of Coach Burgess,” Jax State Athletics Director Greg Seitz said. “He was one of the best coaches to ever stand on a sideline and had as much of an impact on his players as any coach I’ve ever met. He had a tremendous career, but he was an even better man that left a lasting impression on anyone who had the honor of knowing him. Our thoughts and prayers are with his wife Geynell, his children, family, players and staff members family during this difficult time.”

After graduating from Birmingham’s Jones Valley High School, Burgess attended Auburn University, where he lettered in 1961 and 1962. After that, he began his career at Woodlawn High School before relocating to Oxford in 1971. Before taking the helm as head coach of Jax State in 1985, he would remain there for 14 seasons.

“On behalf of the entire JSU Family, we extend our deepest sympathies to the entire Burgess Family,” Jax State President Dr. Don Killingsworth said. “Coach Burgess launched JSU to national recognition in football and was one of the best at building young men into the great husbands, fathers and community members that they are today. He will surely be missed, and all of the Burgess family and Gamecock Football family are in our prayers.”

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