Bill Dooley was born in Mobile, AL in 1934. He attended McGill High School where he played football and basketball. He received a football scholarship to Mississippi State University then was all southeast conference in both 1954 and 1955. After getting a degree in business, Dooley went on to do graduate work while becoming a student coach at Mississippi State. His coaching ability was soon recognized and he was offered a full-time coaching position.
During his 26 years as a head football coach, Bill Dooley transformed 3 division 1 football programs into winners. The University of North Carolina, Virginia Tech and Wake Forest University. While at Carolina, from 1967-1977, Dooley earned 3 ACC Football Championships and bowl bids 6 of his last 8 years. In ’71 he was named The American Football Coaches Association Kodak district coach of the year and the ACC conference coach of the year. During his tenure at UNC, Dooley became the winning-est coach of the schools history with his ’72 team achieving the schools first 11-1 season.
In 1998 bill became Virginia Tech’s head football coach and athletic director. His sports program was ranked among the best in the nation. After 2 rebuilding years, Dooley’s teams would post 7 consecutive winning seasons and 3 bowl appearances. Dooley coached 9 seasons of VT football and left in 1986 as it’s all time winning-est coach.
In 1987, and his first year at Wake Forest, Dooley was rewarded Atlantic Coast Conference Coach of the Year, and in ’92 he was once again AFCA Kodak district coach of the year and ACC coach of the year.
Upon retiring from coaching in 1992, Dooley served the State of North Carolina as director of sports development. He has also served as recruiting director for the Blue-Gray All-Star game and the Florida Gridiron All-Star Classic. He currently serves as executive director of the Bill Dooley Triangle East Chapter of the National Football Foundation and College Hall of Fame. Bill Dooley has served as an executive board member of the World Special Olympics, Honorary Chairman of Easter Seals, Honorary Chairman and Board Member of the North Carolina Special Olympics and Chairman of the Greater Wilmington Sports Hall of Fame. Bill and his wife Marie have made Wilmington their home since 2001, and are the proud parents of 4 sons and 2 granddaughters.
The Wilmington Sports Hall of Fame proudly inducts Bill Dooley.