Richard Williamson (American football)
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|Born||April 13, 1941|
Fort Deposit, Alabama
|Died||September 21, 2015 (aged 74)|
Charlotte, North Carolina
|Coaching career (HC unless noted)|
|1983–1986||Kansas City Chiefs (WR)|
|1987–1990||Tampa Bay Buccaneers (AHC/WR)|
|1990–1991||Tampa Bay Buccaneers|
|1992–1994||Cincinnati Bengals (WR)|
|1995–2000||Carolina Panthers (WR)|
|2000–2001||Carolina Panthers (AHC/OC/WR)|
|2002–2009||Carolina Panthers (WR)|
|Head coaching record|
|Accomplishments and honors|
Richard Williamson (April 13, 1941 – September 21, 2015) was an American football player and coach. He was the head football coach at Memphis State University—now known as the University of Memphis—from 1975 to 1980. Williamson served as the head coach for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers of the National Football League (NFL) from 1990 to 1991.
Williamson was an end under legendary Alabama coach Bear Bryant for the 1961 and 1962 seasons. He caught Joe Namath's first touchdown pass at Alabama. He was one of five players who testified to an Alabama Legislative Committee after The Saturday Evening Post ran an article claiming that Georgia head coach Wally Butts had conspired with Bryant to throw a football game. Both Bryant and Butts later were awarded money in libel suits against the paper. Williamson was the 55th pick in the 1963 American Football League Draft, drafted by the Boston Patriots, but he chose to stay at Alabama as a coach, helping the Tide win National Championships for the 1964 and 1965 seasons.
After a two-year coaching stay at the University of Arkansas, Williamson returned to Alabama for 1970 to 1971 before leaving for Arkansas again (from 1972 to 1974). Williamson then left for Memphis State University, becoming head coach (1975–1980). Williamson's teams finished 7–4 (1975, 1976), 6–5 (1977), 4–7 (1978), 5–6 (1979), and 2–9 (1980). Williamson was honored with the Southern Independent Conference Coach of the Year award twice. After being fired from Memphis, Williamson spent several years as the executive director of the Bluebonnet Bowl.
Williamson returned to coaching in 1983, when he was hired as an assistant for the Kansas City Chiefs under new coach John Mackovic. Mackovic was fired following the 1986 season and replaced by special teams coach Frank Gansz, who opted not to retain Williamson. He moved to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, working under fellow former Alabama coach Ray Perkins as offensive coordinator. When Perkins was fired late in the 1990 season, Williamson was named interim head coach, leading the team to a 1–2 record. Named head coach in 1991, Williamson went 3–13 before being fired at the end of the season.
In 2000, Williamson was named assistant head coach under George Seifert; he was later named offensive coordinator as well, after Bill Musgrave resigned four games into the season. After the 2001 season, Williamson returned to coaching the receivers under new head coach, John Fox. Williamson was well known as one of the top receivers coaches in the league. He cemented this reputation during his time in Carolina; he developed Muhsin Muhammad and Steve Smith into Pro Bowl mainstays.
Head coaching record
|Memphis State Tigers (NCAA Division I/I-A independent) (1975–1980)|
|Won||Lost||Ties||Win %||Finish||Won||Lost||Win %||Result|
|TB||1990||1||2||0||.333||2nd in NFC Central||–||–||–||–|
|TB||1991||3||13||0||.188||5th in NFC Central||–||–||–||–|
Assistant coaches under Richard Williamson who became NCAA head coaches:
- Williamson retires from Panthers at 68
- "Longtime assistant coach Richard Williamson dies". Panthers.com. Retrieved September 24, 2015.
- "Richard Williamson dies; was longtime Carolina Panthers receivers coach". Espn.go.com. Retrieved September 24, 2015.