50 Classes of ASHOF Class of 1973

Class of 1973

Published Thursday, June 15, 2017 6:00 pm

On April 28, 2018, the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame will induct its 50th Class.  In celebration of this milestone, we will be sending an email out each week, over the next 50 weeks, beginning with the Inaugural Class of 1969, and culminating with the

Class of 2018.

This is the 5th of 50 Classes of the ASHOF

Class of 1973


John L. Cain
John L. Cain was born in Montgomery, Alabama on January 18, 1908. "Hurri" He played collegiately at the University of Alabama.  He was a three-time All-American ( 1930, '31, and '32) and a member of the 1930 National Championship Team that won the Rose Bowl.  He served as the head football coach at Southwestern Louisiana Institute, now the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, from 1937 to 1941 and in 1946, compiling a record of 33–19–5.  He was the backfield coach  at the University of Mississippi under Johnny Vaught from 1947 to 1972. During his tenure, Ole Miss won 6 SEC titles and a National Championship.  He was also the head tennis coach at Ole Miss from 1957 to 1973. He was elected to the National Football Hall of Fame in 1973.   He passed away August 18, 1977.


Jefferson Jackson Coleman
Jefferson Jackson Coleman was born March 27, 1906, in Livingston, Alabama.   He attended the University of Alabama and at the age of 19 he became a student secretary to head football coach Wallace Wade. Two years later, he became business manager for the athletic department and held that position for 27 years.     In 1954 he became Director of Alumni Affairs at the University until he retired in 1974.  He was also a major figure in the formation of the NCAA television broadcasting policies. He served as chairman of the building committee of the $4.4 million Memorial Coliseum that was dedicated in January, 1968. In 1988 this coliseum was renamed the Coleman Coliseum.  He passed away on December 19, 1995.


Harry Gilmer
Harry Gilmer was born April 14, 1926, in Birmingham, Alabama. He earned All-American honors as a triple threat for the University of Alabama. In his four years there he completed 230 of 438 passes for a total of 3,108 yards and 32 touchdowns, and scored 25 more touchdowns running. He electrified the nation with his jump passing and the Crimson Tide rode his arm to three bowl games including the Rose Bowl of 1946.  He was MVP of the 1946 Rose Bowl.  He was SEC Player of the Year and All-SEC in 1945.  He was also All-American in 1945.  He was the first overall draft pick in the 1948 NFL Draft by the Washington Redskins.  He also played for the Detroit Lions. He was a two time Pro Bowl selection while playing for the Redskins in 1950 and 1952.  In 1993 he was inducted into the National College Football Hall of Fame.  He passed away August 20, 2016.


James Luther Sewell
James Luther Sewell was born January 15, 1901, in Titus, Alabama. After graduating from the University of Alabama in 1921 where he excelled in football and baseball.  He played in the mayor leagues for 20 years for five different teams. He was regarded as one of the best defensive catchers of his era.  He led the American League four times in base runners caught stealing and four times in assists.  He retired with a .978 fielding percentage.  In his era he had one of the lowest strikeout rates per season.  He never struck out more than 27 times in a season, and his career best was just 16 strikeouts in 451 at-bats in 1936.  He help lead the Washington Senators to the  American League Pennant in 1933.  He made the American League All-Star Team in 1937.  He caught three no-hitters in his career.  After retiring as an active player, he manage the St. Louis Browns.  He led the Browns to the 1944 American League pennant.  For his efforts The Sporting News' named him Manager of the Year.  He also managed the Cincinnati Reds for two seasons.  He passed away on May 14, 1987.


Frederick E. (Dixie) Walker

Frederick E. (Dixie) Walker was born in Villa Rica, Georgia, September 24, 1910. At 17 he signed a baseball contract with Birmingham and farmed out to Greensboro; the New York Yankees picked him up for $25,000. During his professional career, which spanned from 1928-49, he played for five different teams.  For his career he  hit .300 or better in 12 of those years. He had a career batting average of .306.  In 1944 he led the National League in hitting with a .357 average for the Brooklyn Dodgers.  He was the 1945 National League runs batted in champion, with his total of 124.   He played in the 1941 and ‘47 World Series and played in five consecutive  All-Star games (1943-'47).  He managed the Atlanta Crackers to a Southern League pennant in 1951. Later he would coach and scout for Los Angeles Dodgers. He passed away on May 17, 1982.


Hoyt (Wu) Winslett
Hoyt (Wu) Winslett was born January 22, 1904 at Horseshoe Bend, Alabama.  He was part of the University of Alabama Crimson Tide's first two national championship teams in 1925 and 1926.  He help lead the Crimson Tide to three consecutive Southern Conference Championships in 1924, '25 and '26.  In 1926 he was recognized as Alabama's first Associated Press All-American, as well as, the first from Southern United States.  That same year he was named to the All-Southern Team.  He passed away October 2, 1998.