Paul Sheeks

Paul Sheeks
Sport(s) American football, basketball
Biographical details
Born (1889-10-18)October 18, 1889
Grand Rapids, North Dakota
Died September 17, 1968(1968-09-17) (aged 78)
Akron, Ohio
Alma mater Dakota Wesleyan, South Dakota
Playing career
1910–1914 South Dakota
1921–1922 Akron Pros
1910–1914 South Dakota
Position(s) End, quarterback (football)
Coaching career (HC unless noted)
1915–1916 Wabash
1916–1917 Wabash
1937–1941 Akron Firestone Non-Skids
Head coaching record
Overall 14–2–1 (college football)
19–2 (college basketball)
Accomplishments and honors
2x NBL Champion (1938–39, 1939–40)

Paul Preston "Pepper" Sheeks (October 18, 1889 – September 17, 1968) was an American football and basketball player and coach. He played professional football with the Akron Pros of the National Football League (NFL) 1922 and 1923. Before he joined the NFL, Sheeksplayed college football and college basketball at the University of South Dakota.

He then became the 20th head college football coach for the Wabash College Little Giants located in Crawfordsville, Indiana and he held that position for two seasons, from 1915 until 1916. In 1915 Sheeks guided the Little Giants to a 7–0–1 record.[2] Wabash would not have another undefeated season until 1951.[3] Sheek's football coaching record at Wabash was 14–2–1 ties, ranking him 11th at Wabash in total wins and second at the school in winning percentage (.853).[4] Sheeks was also coached the Wabash College basketball team, from 1916 to 1917. In just one year of coaching, Sheeks led Wabash basketball team to a 19–2 record.[2]

After World War I, Sheeks became the recreation director of the Firestone Tire and Rubber Company. Through this position, he coached the Akron Red Peppers bantamweight football team to national recognition in 1935.[5]

In 1935 Sheeks helped found the National Basketball League, considered a predecessor of the National Basketball Association.[6] He later became the coach of the Akron Firestone Non-Skids winning two league championships and was named NBL Coach of Year twice in 1939 and 1940.[7]


  1. "Coyote Sports Hall of Fame". University of South Dakota Athletics. Retrieved November 17, 2015.
  2. 1 2 "Wabash Athletics History". Wabash College. Retrieved November 17, 2015.
  3. "Wabash College Athletics Hall of Fame, 1951 Football Team". Wabash College. Retrieved November 17, 2015.
  4. Winningest Coach By Percentage (PDF). 2014 Wabasha College Little Giants Football Media Guide. Wabash College. p. 74. Retrieved November 17, 2015.
  5. "Paul "Pepper" Sheeks". Summit County Sports Hall of Fame. Retrieved November 17, 2015.
  6. McCormick, Mick (February 9, 2009). "Historical Perspective: George Chestnut and pioneer pro basketball in Indiana". Tribune-Star. Retrieved November 17, 2015.

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