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McWilliams to join MSU Football Ring of Honor

STARKVILLE, Miss. (WTVA/MSU Athletics) — Tom "Shorty" McWilliams, a four-time All-Southeastern Conference selection and one of the greatest backs in Mississippi State football history, will become the newest member of the MSU Ring of Honor inside Davis Wade Stadium at Scott Field in a halftime ceremony Saturday.

McWilliams will become the sixth Bulldog legend to join the Ring of Honor, joining Johnie Cooks, Jack Cristil, Kent Hull, D.D. Lewis and Jackie Parker.

McWilliams played for the Bulldogs in 1944 and from 1946-48, earning All-SEC distinction all four years. He tallied 1,808 career rushing yards, 19 career rushing touchdowns and 144 career points. He remains the only MSU player to earn votes for the Heisman Trophy when he finished 10th in the balloting in 1944.

The Newton, Miss., native was voted a second-team All-America selection in 1944. In a 26-21 win over Auburn on Nov. 11, 1944, McWilliams rushed for 148 yards on 16 carries. That same season he was voted SEC Most Valuable Player by the Nashville Banner.

McWilliams still holds the MSU single-game record for plays with 36 in a 20-0 win over Tulane on Nov. 1, 1947. Until a knee injury ended his career, McWilliams played professionally for the Los Angeles Dons in 1949 and the Pittsburgh Steelers in 1950.

McWilliams was inducted into the Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame in 1963 and then into the Mississippi State Sports Hall of Fame in 1970.

A Korean War veteran, McWilliams passed away on Jan. 9, 1997 at the age of 70. Today, he is survived by his four daughters, Suzanne, Missie, Gloria and Dottie.






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