William "Bill" Hayes
William "Bill" Hayes
Title: Head Football Coach/Athletic Director
Alma Mater: North Carolina Central,
Experience: 12 Seasons

On Nov. 3, 2009, Winston-Salem State University announced that William “Bill” Hayes, whose career in college athletics spans more than 36 years, would become the fifth Athletic Director in the history of the WSSU Athletic program.  Hayes will assume his duties at WSSU on Jan. 1, 2010.

Hayes comes to WSSU from Florida A&M University where he served as the Director of Athletics for the past two years.  In a two-year period that spanned from Dec. 4, 2007 until Jan. 1, 2010, Hayes was instrumental in reviving the Rattlers’ storied athletic program. 

Hayes helped to revitalize the Florida A&M University athletic program and was responsible for overseeing the efforts to build FAMU’s new $40 million men’s and women’s basketball arena.  The Florida A&M Multipurpose Center and Teaching Gym, also used for the University’s graduation ceremonies, is a 135,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art facility, which includes updated locker rooms, separate offices for head coaches and assistant coaches, a weight room with modern equipment, classrooms, a dance studio, computer rooms and seating for more than 9,500 fans.

During his tenure at Florida A&M, the Rattlers earned three Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) titles and became the first HBCU, and the only Division I-FCS school, to host ESPN’s critically acclaimed College Gameday on Nov. 15, 2008. 

Born and raised in Durham, North Carolina, Hayes is a veritable sports legend in North Carolina as an athlete, coach, educator, administrator and champion for young people.

Hayes, who grew up just a few blocks from the campus of North Carolina Central University (NCCU) in Durham, N.C., was a multi-sport student-athlete at Durham’s Hillside High School.

Following a stellar high school career, he enrolled at NCCU and played four seasons of football as a center and linebacker, earning three All-America citations before graduating in 1965 with a degree in physical education.

After graduating from NCCU, Hayes worked the high school football circuit as an assistant coach making stops at Northside High School in Gretha, Virginia (1965), Paisley High School (1966) and North Forsyth High School (1967-71) in Winston-Salem, N.C. as well as his alma mater Hillside High School (1972). 

He accepted his first college coaching job in 1973 as the offensive backs coach at Wake Forest University, becoming the first African American coach in the Atlantic Coast Conference.

Three years later, in 1976, Hayes took over as the head football coach at Winston-Salem State University a position he would hold from 1976-87.

During his 12 seasons at WSSU, the Rams, captured three Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA) championships (1977, 1978 and 1987) and seven division championships, turned in back-to-back undefeated regular season marks in 1977 and 1978 and posted an overall record of 89-40-2.


In 1988, Hayes was hired as the head football coach at North Carolina A&T State University where he guided the Aggies to an 11-2 record and the 1999 Sheridan Broadcasting Network Black College National Championship as well as leading the Aggies to a total of three MEAC titles, two NCAA Division I-AA playoff appearances and an overall record of 106-64-0 in 15 seasons.


In all, Hayes spent 27 seasons as a collegiate head football coach, compiling a 195-104-2 overall record en route to establishing himself as the winningest coach at both Winston-Salem State and North Carolina A&T as he finished his career with more victories (195) than any other college football head coach in the history of the State of North Carolina.

In July of 2003, Hayes assumed the reigns of the athletic program at his alma mater, NCCU. During his four-year tenure, he made a significant impact on the program by placing great emphasis on reviving the rich traditions of Eagle Athletics.

Under his direction, NCCU had the most productive fund-raising campaign of any athletics department among all Historically Black Colleges and Universities.

A true fundraising visionary, Hayes implemented a revenue-generating infrastructure at North Carolina Central that helped put the Eagles on the road towards a transition to the NCAA Division I level.  The foundation of Hayes’ fundraising success was built when he initiated the "$1,000 Eagles" campaign with the slogan, "1,000 Eagles Giving $1,000 ... Springboard to $1 Million."

He was instrumental in resurrecting a dormant NCCU Athletic Hall of Fame, which held its first induction since 1997, on Oct. 15, 2004, only a year after his arrival as Athletic Director.

He also spearheaded projects to install football conference championship flags in O'Kelly-Riddick Stadium and to hang jerseys of basketball legends inside McLendon-McDougald Gym.

For his efforts, Hayes was twice recognized as the CIAA's top athletic administrator when he was presented with the Jeanette A. Lee Athletic Administration Award in 2006 and 2007.


Hayes was selected as the 2006 CIAA Athletics Director of the Year after the 2005-06 campaign, having guiding the program to its most successful season (at the time) in school history with four conference titles and four NCAA Championship team qualifiers during the 2005-06 slate.


During the 2006-07 school year, Hayes directed NCCU to its most successful season in school history with four conference titles and five NCAA Championship team qualifiers as the Eagles placed 24th in the final standings of the U.S. Sports Academy Directors' Cup, the prestigious award presented annually to the best overall collegiate athletics programs in the country.

Hayes’ overriding passion is for the betterment of America’s youth and he actively serves the community with various organizations, most notably with the Boy Scouts of America.

A member of the Southern Region Boy Scouts Executive Board, Hayes’ exemplary efforts earned him the Boy Scouts’ highest local honor, the Silver Beaver Award.  Following his Silver Beaver Award, Hayes earned the Silver Antelope Award in May of 2001, the highest regional award that can be bestowed upon a Boy Scout volunteer.

Hayes has been inducted into three halls of fame, including the North Carolina Central University Alex M. Rivera Athletic Hall of Fame, the Winston-Salem State University Clarence E. "Big House" Gaines Athletic Hall of Fame, and the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association John B. McLendon, Jr. Hall of Fame.

He is married to the former Carolyn Pratt of Durham, NC, and they have a son, William, Jr., and a daughter, Sherri Walker.