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On this day in sports history


The Greenville Standard


This is the sixth in a series of articles covering the University of Alabama’s All-Americans.

Today I will talk about Millard “Dixie” Howell. He was born Nov. 24, 1912 in Hartford, Alabama.

He graduated from Geneva County High in 1931 and was in the first signing class under Coach Frank Thomas. He played at Alabama from 1932-34.

Howell was a triple threat player who could run, pass and kick. He played halfback in the Notre Dame Box Offense and led Alabama to the first two Southeastern Championships in 1933 and 1934. The latter season, Alabama finished at 10-0 and won the National Championship.

End Don Hutson helped form a deadly passing combination that season. Alabama played in the 1935 Rose Bowl, beating Stanford 29-13. Howell threw two touchdown passes to Hutson. Howell ran for two touchdowns. Howell is a member of the All-time Rose Bowl Team.

Howell played one season in the NFL with the Washington Redskins in 1937. The Redskins beat the Chicago Bears to win the NFL Championship.

In 1938 Howell was hired as the head coach at Arizona State. Howell was at Arizona State from 1938-41. Arizona State won two conference championships and made two appearances in The Sun Bowl.

After the 1941 season, Howell resigned to join the Navy in 1942. Howell was discharged from the Navy in November 1945. Howell was hired in January 1946 to coach the backs and baseball team.

In February 1947, he was hired as head coach at Idaho. His record at Idaho in 1947 was 4-4, in 1948 3-6, in 1949 3-5 and in 1950-3-5-1. After the 1950 season, Howell’s contract was not renewed.

Howell moved to Los Angeles and worked in sales and public relations. Howell was inducted into The College Football Hall of Fame in 1970.

Howell passed away on March 2, 1971 in Los Angeles from cancer. Coach Bryant named the most valuable player of the A-Day game the Dixie Howell Memorial Trophy. The award has been presented since 1971.


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