• 73°

Alcorn State University mourns loss of beloved former coach

By ALCORN STATE UNIVERSITY

LORMAN – One of the most iconic figures in the history of Alcorn State University athletics, Marino Casem died in his home Saturday afternoon at the age of 85.

Known as “The Godfather”, Casem was the head football coach at Alcorn for 22 seasons and served as director of athletics for 20 years. He’s the winningest football coach in the history of Alcorn athletics, amassing a record of 132-65-8 from 1964-1985.

During his coaching tenure, Alcorn won seven SWAC football championships and Casem was named SWAC Coach of the Year seven times. He also coached the Braves to four Black National Titles in 1967, 1968, 1973 and 1984.

As an athletic director, Casem led the effort in building the Davey L. Whitney Complex, the home to the Alcorn basketball and volleyball programs. It opened in 1975.

Alcorn plays its home football games in a stadium named in his honor, Jack Spinks-Marino Casem Stadium. Casem first arrived at Alcorn as an assistant coach in 1959, along with Spinks, and the two were close friends.

Casem was named to the SWAC Hall of Fame in 1992, Alcorn Hall of Fame in 1993, College Football Hall of Fame in 1998 and Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame in 2003.