Kent State football team to honor Don James with helmet sticker

By Allen Moff | Staff writer Published:

By Allen Moff | Staff Writer

The Kent State football team will honor former coach Don James, who died on Sunday of complications from pancreatic cancer, on Saturday by wearing stickers on the back of their helmets. James was 80.

The blue and yellow sticker will feature James' "DJ" initials and will join the sticker currently on the helmet honoring Helen Dix. Her initials "HD" were placed in honor of the major KSU contributor that died earlier this month. Dix's husband, the late Robert C. Dix, was the publisher of the Record-Courier and is the person that Dix Stadium is named after.

Both memorial stickers will remain on the Flashes' helmets for the remainder of the season.

Additionally, the University of Washington will honor James on Saturday. James was the head coach of the Huskies from 1975-92 and helped lead the program to a share of the national championship in 1991.

Washington will host a public memorial service for James on Sunday at 3 p.m. at Alaska Airlines Arena.

Additionally, UW has announced the following remembrances of James during Saturday night's Homecoming football game against California:

n James' family members will serve as honorary captains for the pregame coin toss.

n The Husky Marching Band will perform "A Tribute to The Dawgfather," including a memorial video and former UW football players, during halftime.

n The UW players will wear helmet decals for the remainder of the 2013 season.

n UW coaches and other sideline staff will wear a similar patch.

Kent State lost another member of its football family on Monday in former running back Marcus Haywood of Akron.

Haywood and Haynes were teammates with the Flashes. Haywood lettered from 1989-91, and led Kent State in rushing during the 1990 season with 672 yards and four touchdowns.

"He was an excellent player, one of the best running backs that ever played here," said Haynes. "Very talented, and right here from Akron. Just an awesome guy, got a family, wife and kids that he's leaving behind. It's a sad day for sure."

Haywood died one day after James died at his home in Washington. James led the Flashes to their only Mid-American Conference championship in 1972.

Email: amoff@recordpub.com

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