Willie Brown (American football, born 1942)

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Willie Brown
Born:(1942-03-21)March 21, 1942
Tuscaloosa, Alabama
Died:July 26, 2018(2018-07-26) (aged 76)
Carson, California
Career information
Position(s)Running Back, Wide Receiver, Defensive back
Height6 ft 0 in (183 cm)
Weight188 lb (85 kg)
CollegeUSC Trojans
NFL draft1964 / Round: 3rd / Pick: 32nd
Drafted byLos Angeles Rams
Career history
As player
1964-1965Los Angeles Rams
1966Philadelphia Eagles

Willie Brown (March 21, 1942 – July 26, 2018) was an American college and professional football player and coach. A star player for the University of Southern California, he went on to play three seasons in the National Football League. After his playing career, he served as a coach for the Trojans and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers of the National Football League.

Playing career[edit]

He played high school football at Long Beach Poly where he won the California Interscholastic Federation player of the year award in 1959.[1]

Brown went on to play at the University of Southern California. As he was a two-way player, he began as a tailback and kickoff returner but also played defensive back and flanker. In 1962, he led the Trojans, who went on to win the national championship, in rushing, kickoff returns and interceptions. In 1963, as the team captain, he led the team in receiving, scoring and interceptions.[1][2]

He was also a standout baseball player, who was a center fielder and shortstop for the university's baseball team that won the 1963 College World Series.[1][3]

In the 1964 NFL Draft, the Los Angeles Rams selected him with the fourth pick of the third round, 32nd overall. He played two seasons with the Rams before finishing his playing career with the Philadelphia Eagles. He accumulated 133 rushing yards and 110 receiving yards in the NFL.

Brown returned to USC as an assistant football coach from 1968 to 1975 and helped the Trojans win the 1972 and 1974 national championships. He also served as a Trojan baseball assistant in 1969 and in 1970, when USC won the 1970 College World Series.[4]

In 1976 and 1978, he went to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers where he served as the wide receivers coach and in 1977, the team's running backs coach.[5] In his later years, Brown was an academic monitor for USC's Student-Athlete Academic Services from 1996 to 2016.[1]

Personal life[edit]

Brown had two brothers, Oscar and Ollie, both of whom played Major League Baseball. Ollie, who was the first pick by the San Diego Padres in the 1968 Major League Baseball expansion draft and was known as the “Original Padre”, died in 2015.[4][2]

Brown died on July 26, 2018 in Carson, California from cancer.[1]


  1. ^ a b c d e "Willie Brown, who won national championships at USC as a player and coach in both football and baseball, dies at 76". Los Angeles Times. 2018-07-26.
  2. ^ a b "Former Eagle Willie Brown, brother of former Phillie Ollie Brown, dies at 76". Philadelphia Tribune. 2018-07-27.
  3. ^ "Former USC tailback, NFL player Willie Brown dies at 76". Associated Press. 2018-07-26.
  4. ^ a b In memoriam: Willie Brown, football star and assistant football, baseball coach
  5. ^ Buccaneers media guide

External links[edit]