Willie Heidelburg

wee willie2Born: August 28, 1950
Death: October 15, 2013
Hometown: Lumberton, MS
Year of Induction: 2016


John Jefferson High in Purvis, 1965-68

  • Lettered and starred in both football and track

Pearl River Junior College, 1968-69

  • Was among the first black recruits in 1968
  •  Set PRC school rushing record with 910 yards in 1969
  • Scored three touchdowns in two different games
  • PRC was winless the year before he got there. Willie led the Wildcats to state championship and undefeated season in 1969
  • Charter member of Mississippi Junior College Sports Hall of Fame, 1988

Southern Miss, 1970-71

  • First black football player at USM
  • Earned two letters as a halfback and kick return specialist
  • Scored two touchdown to help defeat No. 4 ranked Ole Miss on Oct. 17, 1970, in what many consider the biggest upset victory in Mississippi football history
  • Coached by Hall of Famer P.W. Underwood and played with Hall of Famer Ray Guy
  • Inducted into USM Sports Hall of Fame, 1996


  • Coached football, track and basketball, Murrah High School, 1973-1998
  • Assistant football coach, Belhaven University, 19989-2013

Did you know?

  • Willie Hedielburg was nominated for the Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame by a middle school class in Purvis. The students believed Heidelburg, one of the first black players to play Division I football in Mississippi and the first to score a touchdown, deserved to be enshrined among the state’s athletic greats.