John Payne (American football)

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John Payne
Biographical details
Born (1933-05-15) May 15, 1933 (age 85)
Wewoka, Oklahoma
Alma mater Oklahoma State University
Playing career
1951–1954 Oklahoma State
Position(s) Guard, center
Coaching career (HC unless noted)
1966–1967 BYU (OL)
1968–1969 Edmonton Eskimos (OL)
1970 Winnipeg Blue Bombers (assistant)
1971–1972 Saskatchewan Roughriders (assistant)
1973–1976 Saskatchewan Roughriders
1977 Detroit Lions (OL)
1978–1980 Hamilton Tiger-Cats
1981–1982 TCU (OC)
1983–1984 Arizona Wranglers (OL)
1985–1990 Abilene Christian
1992 Toronto Argonauts (OL)
1993 Sacramento Gold Miners (OL)
1994 BC Lions (OC)
1995 Winnipeg Blue Bombers (DL)
1996 London Monarchs (OL)
1996 Ottawa Rough Riders (assistant)
1996 Ottawa Rough Riders
1997 Frankfurt Galaxy (OC)
1998 New York CityHawks (OC)
Head coaching record
Overall 62–63–3 (CFL)
26–34–2 (college)

John D. Payne (born May 15, 1933) is a former American collegiate and professional football coach. He served as head coach for the Saskatchewan Roughriders (1973–1976), Hamilton Tiger-Cats (1978–1980) and Ottawa Rough Riders (1996) of the Canadian Football League (CFL), compiling a career record of 62–63–3. Payne also was the head football coach at Abilene Christian University from 1985 to 1990, posting a mark of 26–34–2.

Coaching career

After serving as an assistant with Central High School [1] and BYU,[2] Payne moved to the Canadian Football League in 1968. He served as an assistant with the Edmonton Eskimos, Winnipeg Blue Bombers and Saskatchewan Roughriders before becoming the Roughriders head coach in 1973.[3] In his four season as head coach, Payne had a 40–23–1 record and led Saskatchewan to the 1976 Grey Cup.

In 1977, Payne left the Roughriders and joined the Detroit Lions. Payne and the rest of the coaching staff was fired at the end of the season.[4] He returned to the CFL, replacing Tom Dimitroff as head coach of the Hamilton Tiger-Cats five games into the 1978 season.[5] He had some success with Hamilton, compiling an 18–24–1 record over three seasons and leading the team to the 1980 Grey Cup. After the Tiger-Cats trouncing at the hands of the Edmonton Eskimo dynasty 48-10 in the Grey Cup game, owner Harold Ballard indicated that he preferred recently fired Arizona State football coach Frank Kush over Payne, which led to his resignation.[6]

In 1985, Payne became head coach at Abilene Christian University located in Abilene, Texas. He was the Wildcats head coach for six seasons [7][8] and had a coaching record of 26–34–2.

Payne returned to the CFL in 1993 as the offensive line coach for the Sacramento Gold Miners.[9] In 1995, Norton Herrick, an Orlando, Florida real estate developer, announced plans to move the CFL's Las Vegas Posse to Jackson, Mississippi. Payne was to be the club's head coach, however plans fell through and the relocation did not take place; the team instead folded.[10] In 1996, Payne, then an assistant with the Ottawa Rough Riders, was promoted to head coach.[11] He coached the team to a 3–11 record; the team finished the year 3-15. The Rough Riders ceased operations after the season and Payne became the final coach in the 120-year history of the team.

On November 18, 1997, the New York CityHawks of the Arena Football League named Payne offensive coordinator.


  1. ^ "Lions Hire Assistant". Ludington Daily News. 1977-02-19. Retrieved 2009-06-23.
  2. ^
  3. ^ "Coach Named". Spokane Daily Chronicle. 1972-12-21. Retrieved 2009-06-23.
  4. ^ "Hudspeth, staff ousted by Lions". St. Petersburg Times. 1978-01-10. Retrieved 2009-06-23.
  5. ^ "Tiger Cats Fire Head Coach". Toledo Blade. 1978-08-11. Retrieved 2009-06-23.
  6. ^ "Once-revered Kush starting all over". Toledo Blade. 1980-12-18. Retrieved 2009-06-23.
  7. ^ College Football Reference Abilene Christian University Football Records
  8. ^ 2008 Wildcat Football (media guide) Archived 2011-07-07 at the Wayback Machine. ACU Record Book
  9. ^
  10. ^ Murray, Ken (April 15, 1995). "Posse dispersal draft is set". The Baltimore Sun. Retrieved January 12, 2014.
  11. ^ "People in Sports". Eugene Register-Guard. 1996-07-05. Retrieved 2009-06-23.
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