Birthplace: Brenham, TX
Wilson Whitley came to the University of Houston as a three-time all state player, and a two-time All-America from Brenham, TX. Wilson was a starter as a freshman, and was part of a team that went 11-1. As a sophomore, he was an honorable mention All-America as he was second on the team in tackles, added six sacks, a blocked kick and had two fumble recoveries. In Whitley's senior season, he became a consensus All-America selection and was the recipient of the Lombardi Award. That 1976 season was Houston's first year in the Southwest Conference. He anchored a defense that held opponents to ten or fewer points in five games. His numbers for that season included five sacks, and 50 tackles. In his final collegiate game, he had eight stops in an upset victory over previously unbeaten Maryland in a Cotton Bowl victory. Despite playing only one year in the SWC, Whitley was named the SWC Defensive Player of the Decade. He was the eighth overall selection in the NFL draft, playing seven NFL seasons and appearing in a Super Bowl with Cincinnati. At the age of 37 he suffered a fatal heart attack.
University of Houston