The Gulf South Conference is pleased to announce Fred McAfee as one of the five new inductees to its Hall of Fame Class for 2017, which will be honored on Wednesday, May 31.
The Gulf South Conference, now in its 47th year, will see four former student-athletes and one head coach inducted into this year’s GSC Hall of Fame class. Amy Carroll-Denley (Delta State), Radovan Chrz (West Florida), Stephanie Pinto (Alabama Huntsville) and Bobby Wallace (North Alabama) will join McAfee in the 2017 class.
McAfee began his career at Mississippi College in 1987 and is the MC career leader in rushing yards (4,416), attempts (811) and touchdowns (38). He helped lead the Choctaws to Gulf South Conference championships in 1988 and 1990 and a trip to the Division II national championship game in 1989, a game the Choctaws won, 3-0, over Jacksonville State.
In 1990, McAfee rushed for an MC record, 1,583 yards with 17 touchdowns as the Choctaws won their third GSC title, overall. For his efforts that season, McAfee earned All-American honors and finished third in the Harlon Hill Trophy voting, honoring the top Division II player in the nation. In 2011, he was elected into the NCAA Division II College Football Hall of Fame.
“Fred was such a special player that always had a great attitude to go with a great talent in the game of football,” former Choctaw football head coach John Williams, who led MC to a win in the 1989 Division II national championship game. “He was such a delight to coach. Everyone on this campus loved Fred, and that’s a tribute to his wonderful attitude and personality.”
“I liken him to a hound dog that sits up under the porch and slobbers all over himself to get a biscuit. He always lit up when his number was called, and you could see that on the field.”
McAfee was known as a positive influence in the locker room during his time in the National Football League, a career that spanned 16 seasons (1991-2006) and saw him play for the Saints, Arizona Cardinals, Pittsburgh Steelers and Tampa Bay Buccaneers. He played in 194 games in his career, including 122 contests in two stints with New Orleans. Picked by the Saints in the sixth round of the 1991 NFL Draft, he played for three of the club’s five division champion teams and has been affiliated with the team for all five, including the 2009 Super Bowl XLIV Championship campaign.
McAfee first played for the Saints from 1991-93, leading New Orleans in rushing as a rookie with a career-high 494 yards. That season the Saints won their first NFC West title. After a seven-game stint with the Cardinals in 1994, he was signed by the Steelers later that season and stayed until 1997, serving as special teams captain for two years.
He rejoined the Saints in 2000 and was voted to the Pro Bowl in 2002 for his stellar special teams play. His final game was the 2006 finale vs. Carolina, and one of the final carries of his career was a six-yard run for a touchdown in the third quarter.
Currently in his ninth year as the Director of Player Personnel for the Saints, McAfee has a wide-range of responsibilities centered around helping players and their families improve their quality of life as well as invest in their futures. He also organizes continuing college education opportunities, internships, life skills training seminars, financial education classes and family assistance.
“We are obviously very proud of Fred and the ambassador he has been for Mississippi College during and after his playing career as a Choctaw,” said athletic director Mike Jones. “This is a great honor for Fred, and it is fitting that he is the first MC student-athlete to be inducted into the GSC Hall of Fame.”
The Hall of Fame honorees will be officially inducted on Wednesday, May 31, in Pensacola, Fla., at the Hilton Pensacola Beach Hotel. Check back via gscsports.org for updates as the ceremony draws closer.