Herman Boone, the T.C. Williams High School football head coach that gained national attention from the film Remember the Titans, has passed away at the age of 84. The school's boosters confirmed the news on Wednesday afternoon. Former school principal John Porter also confirmed the news to Megan Cloherty of WTOP.
It is with great sadness that we share the sad news of the passing of former Head Football Coach Herman Boone who lead the Titans to the State Championship in 1971🏈. #RIP@TCWilliamsAD @TCWSports @AlexandriaPatch @AlexandriaNow @AlexGazette pic.twitter.com/4I0DFAAWSF— T.C. Williams H.S. Football Boosters (@TCTitanFootball) December 18, 2019
In 1971, Boone took an integrated group of players from two area schools to the state championship title. The team finished the year undefeated at 13–0 and served as the inspiration for the 2000 film starring Denzel Washington. The 1971 team posted a 357-45 scoring differential during the year and posted nine shutouts.
Per the report by WTOP, several figures associated with the 1971 team have passed away this year. This includes assistant coach Bill Yoast, who was portrayed by Will Patton, and player Petey Jones, who was played by Donald Faison. Yoast was 94 years old when he passed away in May. Jones passed away on July 1 at the age of 65. He had served as a school security officer for Alexandria City Public Schools.
Following the state title victory, Boone remained at T.C. Williams until 1979. He was fired by the school due to allegations of physical and verbal abuse by some players and coaches. Boone later served as a public speaker after his removal from the school. He reportedly received $15,000 for his corporate speeches and $10,000 for each college booking.
Remember the Titans is viewed as one of the most popular sports films of all time. Since its release in September 2000, the film has grossed more than $136 million worldwide. However, a Deadspin article from 2014 created some questions about the accuracy of the film, as well as Washington's portrayal.
Author Dave McKenna talked to former players from the 1971 team, including kicker Greg Paspatis. The specialist said that the 13-0 record was owed more to the large talent pool of players available than it was to Boone's leadership. As he said, the merger combined three full-size schools and gave the coaching staff the top options available.
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