Hall of Fame - Inductee Detail

Riley "General" Smith

Riley "General" Smith


  • Position: Quarterback
  • School: Alabama
  • High School: Greenwood, MS (Greenwood HS)Columbus, MS (Columbus HS)
  • Years: 1933-1935
  • Inducted: 1985
  • Place of Birth: Greenwood, MS
  • Date of Birth: Jul 14, 1911
  • Place of Death: Mobile, AL
  • Date of Death: Aug 09, 1999
  • Jersey Number: 26
  • Height: 6-1
  • Weight: 195

Member Biography

A native of Greenwood, Mississippi, Riley Smith was Alabama's quarterback, blazing through his college career with a reputation for being a threat to any department. The 6-1, 195-pounder could pass, block, punt, kick extra points and boot field goals. Smith was on Frank Thomas's Crimson Tide team that humbled Stanford, 29-13, in the January 1, 1935 Rose Bowl. In 1935 he was named to the All-America teams of the Associated Press, Collier's Magazine and the All- America Board. He also won the Jacobs Trophy as the best blocker in the Southeastern Conference. He played in the East-West Shrine Game, the Chicago All-Star Game and the New York All-Star Game and was captain of his team in each one. In 1936 he played four football games in 10 days, two with all-star college teams and two with his pro team, the Boston Redskins. He was the second player chosen in the first pro draft (after Jay Berwanger). In 1936-37 he missed only three minutes in 26 Redskin games. An injury ended his playing career, and he moved to Washington and Lee, as assistant coach in 1939 and head coach 1940-42. He served in the Navy as Lieutenant commander 1942-45 and became a real estate developer in Mobile Alabama. He raised $1.65 million for the University of Alabama. He set a record for funds raised for the American Heart Association in a seven county district.