Harper Davis
Biographical details
Born(1925-12-11)December 11, 1925
Clarksdale, Mississippi, U.S.
DiedDecember 26, 2020(2020-12-26) (aged 95)
Jackson, Mississippi, U.S.
Playing career
1945–1948Mississippi State
1949Los Angeles Dons
1950Chicago Bears
1951Green Bay Packers
Position(s)Halfback, defensive back
Coaching career (HC unless noted)
1953West Point HS (MS)
1955Columbus Lee HS (MS)
1956–1963Mississippi State (assistant)
1990–2006Jackson Academy (MS) (assistant)
Head coaching record
Overall136–81–4 (college)

Julius Harper Davis Jr. (December 11, 1925 – December 26, 2020) was an American football player and coach. He played professionally as a defensive back in the All-America Football Conference (AAFC) and the National Football League (NFL). Davis served as the head football coach at Millsaps College from 1964 to 1988, compiling a record of 136–81–4.[1]

College career

Davis played college football at Mississippi State University from 1945 until 1948. He was the Bulldogs leading scorer in 1945, 1947, and 1948 and was named MSU Best Athlete three years in a row from 1946 to 1948. Davis was named to the AP All-SEC team and the UPI All-South team in 1945 and the College All-Star Game in 1949.[2]

Professional career

Davis was drafted in the second round of the 1949 NFL Draft by the NFL's Pittsburgh Steelers but played that year for the Los Angeles Dons of the All-America Football Conference. Following the 1949 season the AAFC merged with the NFL and all but three of the ten AAFC teams were disbanded while the 49ers, Browns, and Colts joined the NFL. The players from the disbanded teams entered a dispersal draft and Davis was the first round selection of the Chicago Bears.[3] Davis spent one season in Chicago and led the team in interceptions with five.[4] Davis left Chicago and spent the following season as a member of the Green Bay Packers during the 1951 NFL season.[5][6]

Coaching career

Davis began his coaching career as the head coach at West Point High School in West Point, Mississippi. After one season at West Point he took the head coaching job at Columbus Lee High School in Columbus, Mississippi. after spending a single season as the coach of the Lee Generals, Davis returned to his Alma Mater, Mississippi State, and served as an assistant from 1956 through 1963. Davis left MSU to take over as the head coach at Millsaps College in Jackson, Mississippi. As the head coach at Millsaps he compiled an overall record of 136–81–4[7] in 25 seasons including an undefeated 9–0 season for the 1980 Millsaps Majors football team. He also led the Majors to their first Division III playoff appearance in 1975. Davis retired from Millsaps following the 1988 season.[8] After his retirement from Millsaps, he served as an assistant coach at Jackson Academy in Jackson, Mississippi from 1990 to 2006.[9]

Honors and awards

See also


  1. ^ NCAA Football Coaching Records
  2. ^ "julius Harper Davis entry at the Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame". Archived from the original on November 1, 2018. Retrieved January 9, 2014.
  3. ^ All-America Football Conference Encyclopedia Archived May 5, 2012, at the Wayback Machine
  4. ^ 1950 Chicago Bears Season
  5. ^ 1951 green Bay Packers Season
  6. ^ Harper Davis Pro Football Reference entry
  7. ^ NCAA Football Coaching Records
  8. ^ http://fle-pics.blogspot.com/2010/01/history-of-football-coaches-at-millsaps.html A History of Football Coaches at Millsaps
  9. ^ "Recognizing Julius Harper Davis". Archived from the original on January 10, 2014. Retrieved January 9, 2014.
  10. ^ Alumni Field to be renamed Harper Davis Field
  11. ^ Harper Davis Field
  12. ^ Congressional Record, Volume 151, Part 8, May 19, 2005 to June 6, 2005