Former Lawrence High football coaching legend Bill Freeman will receive the Kansas Sports Hall of Fame’s “Pride of Kansas Award” prior to the opening kickoff of Southern Coffey County High School's football game against Lebo on Sept. 7 in Freeman’s hometown of LeRoy. The ceremony will be at 6:45 p.m., with the kickoff slated for 7.
According to Ted Hayes, President/CEO of the Kansas Sports Hall of Fame, the Pride of Kansas Award is given to Kansas coaches and athletes who “achieved a lifetime of greatness on the field of competition while maintaining the highest level of integrity in positively influencing the lives of youth in the state.” Next to induction in the Hall of Fame, the Pride of Kansas Award is the highest honor given to a coach or athlete by the Kansas Sports Hall of Fame.
Freeman in 36 years as a head coach compiled a 242-81-3 record overall with eight total state football titles. He went 134-38 at LHS winning state titles in 1979, 84, 86, 87 and 89. He won two state titles at Osawatomie and one at LeRoy. He also won a pair of state track titles at LHS in 1989 and '90.
Freeman is an inductee of the Emporia State University Hall of Honor where he was a four-year letterman at offensive guard from 1949-53, the National Football Foundation College Hall of Fame Jayhawk Chapter and the KSHSAA Hall of Fame. He coached several players who went on to play in the National Football League, including Lynn Dickey, Derrick Jensen, Jeff Wright, Bucky Scribner, and Keith DeLong.
The Hall of Fame invites former players, fans, and the public to join in the recognition of Freeman on Sept. 7.