Grambling, LA – He was more than a college football coach. He was an educator. He was a motivator. He was a role model. He was humble. He was a great American. Coach Eddie G. Robinson was this and much more to his Grambling State University family that he served for nearly 60 years. Grambling State University President Horace Judson said, “As remarkable as his achievements in football were, his impact off the field was perhaps even more important. He touched, shaped and inspired the lives of so many. His sterling example . . . influenced the whole nation. Coach Robinson was a great American.” Coach Rob, as he was lovingly called, began his career at Grambling State University in 1941 and ended his career there when he retired in 1997. During his career, he took not only the Grambling Tigers to great heights, but he influenced college football to be a better sport. Penn State Football Coach Joe Paterno said, “Nobody has ever done or will ever do what Eddie Robinson has done for this game. . . . Our profession will never, ever be able to repay Eddie Robinson for what he has done for this country and the profession of football.” In part, what he has done for the profession of football is to send more than 200 players to the NFL, including four Hall of Famers. He has racked up more than 400 wins and 17 Southwestern Athletic Conference (SWAC) championships. Because of his outstanding record, he was dubbed the “winningest” coach in the history of college football. Even so, he always remained humble. Humble is how De’ Eric Henry, The Gramblinite Managing Editor, described Coach Rob. Henry recalled his very first student newspaper assignment in the fall of 2002. He said that for him to have the opportunity to interview Robinson “was like being a child in a candy store.” He was in awe of the humility shown by someone of Robinson’s national and international stature. In addition, Henry said Robinson’s love for Grambling State University was evident, “He repeated several times, ‘Grambling is my Grambling.’” Robinson was also a giver who in turn got the best out of his players. According to Everson Walls, former Grambling defensive back who led the NFL in interceptions three times, “He was everything to me. He was a motivator. He was a teacher. . . . He always had this competitive edge in him that allowed him to give you all he had. He wanted to make sure he brought out the best in you. He would challenge you. He would teach you and then challenge you on what he taught you. He was all about competition. That competitive nature followed us wherever we went." It was Robinson’s competitive nature and his Horatio Alger philosophy of, “If you worked hard in America, you could be successful,” that accounted for his success on and off the field. He did and he was. In the process, he lifted as he climbed. That is what made him a great college football coach, a great educator, a great motivator, a great role model, and a great American. In the words of GSU’s President Judson, “As long as Grambling State University exists, as long as football is played, as long as Americans remain patriotic, Coach Rob's spirit will live. That is a special kind of immortality only very special people can attain. We are deeply saddened by his passing and we will miss him. But, we will celebrate his life with great joy and gratitude. Our hearts and best wishes are with his wife, Doris and his family." Coach Eddie G. Robinson will lie in state today from 10 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. at the Louisiana State Capitol Rotunda in Baton Rouge—an honor that is fitting for Robinson—a man that Gov. Kathleen Blanco called a "true American hero ... and one of the greatest civil rights pioneers in our history." The memorial service will be at the New Rocky Valley Baptist Church, 2155 Martin Luther King, Jr. Drive, Grambling, LA., Tuesday from 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. The home-going celebration will be Wednesday at 11:00 a.m. in the New Assembly Center on the campus of Grambling State University, followed by burial at the Grambling Memorial Gardens on Highway 80.