At the University of South Carolina-Columbia, we contracted a man. We employed a father. We put within our personnel a former professional football player. We hired a husband.
We added to our coaching staff a servant. We appointed the first Floridian ever to win a Heisman Memorial Trophy Award to be our head football coach for the Gamecocks.
There wasn’t one person of color playing in the Southeastern Conference. Yet, Steve Spurrier was the best player at that time. He set records at every place he has coached — whether they were bad or good.
He has one of the worst winning percentages in Washington Redskins history. Ouch! He has the most wins for the South Carolina Gamecocks and Florida Gators in their varsity football history.
As a professional, he rocked our world with his achievements in the football arena. On the contrary, we couldn’t ever see him going back into private life to spend time with his kids, wife and grandchildren. Those were his other jobs he already had to do besides wearing the headset and visor on the sidelines.
He has been involved in football for nearly a half-century.
Most people in the private or public sector retire after about 20 to 30 years of service.
We as the University of South Carolina-Columbia community should respect him as a worker and for all that he did for this university.
Jordan Thomas Cooper is a 2015 graduate of the University of South Carolina. He is the first African-American to serve in both the governor and lieutenant governor’s office as an aide in South Carolina and has worked on several Republican candidates’ national campaigns.