During WWII, Mississippi Southern College (Southern Miss) discontinued its football program. After the war, Coach Thad “Pie” Vann combed the South looking for new players.
Vann recalls the decision to leave the Gulf States Conference and how an undefeated season in 1958 led to national recognition.
Vann served as head football for Southern Miss from 1947 to 1968. He notes how the growth of the program matched the growth of the school.
Pie Vann was inducted into the Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame in 1971 and into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1987. He passed away in September 1982.