Ed Martin

Ed Martin (1925-2002)

Teams coached: South Carolina State Bulldogs, Tennessee State Tigers
South Carolina State record: 219-100 (.687)
Tennessee State record: 282-154 (.647)
Overall record^: 501-254 (.664)

Career Accomplishments:

  • NCAA National Championships:  0
  • NCAA Tournament Appearances:  0
  • NIT Championships:  0
  • NIT Appearances:  0
  • NCAA Division II National Championships:  0  (Runner-up in 1970, 1973)
  • NCAA Division II Tournament Appearances:  11  (1958, 1961, 1963, 1966, 1967, 1970, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1974, 1975)
  • NCAA Division II Tournament Final Four:  4  (1970, 1972, 1973, 1975)

Coaching Career (head coach, unless noted):

1985-1989 Vanderbilt (asst)
1968-1984 Tennessee State
1955-1968 South Carolina State

Ed Martin Facts

  • Edward Alfred Martin Sr.
  • Born June 18, 1925
  • Died February 25, 2002
  • Hometown: Allentown, Pennsylvania
  • Alma Mater: North Carolina A&T State University (BA, 1951) / Temple University (MA)
  • After graduating from William Allen HS (PA), Martin joined the United States Navy during World War II
  • Upon returning to the States, he graduated from North Carolina A&T and was a pitcher in the Negro league for the Philadelphia Stars (1951-52)
  • Took a HS basketball coaching position at the Avery Normal Institute in Charleston, SC, working there for three years (1952-55)
  • Hired in 1955 to be the first-ever head basketball coach at South Carolina State, leading the Bulldogs for 13 seasons
    • Went 219-100 overall and reached five D-II NCAA Tournaments over his tenure; still the second-winningest coach in program history
    • Martin also coached baseball at SC State for four seasons (1956-60), going 28-25 overall
  • Left in 1968 to become the head basketball coach at Tennessee State and stayed there for 16 years; during his tenure, the program moved up to Division I
    • Had an overall record of 282-154, went to six D-II NCAA Tournaments that included four Final Fours and two NCAA Runner-up finishes (1970, 1973)
    • He resigned midway through the 1984-85 season citing a lack of support and funding from the school’s administration
    • Martin is the winningest coach in TSU program history and logged a 106-83 record in 7+ seasons of D-I competition
  • Moved to Nashville in 1985 and became an assistant coach with the Commodores, spending four seasons working under C. M. Newton
    • Stopped coaching in 1989 and was named associate professor of human development at Vandy’s Peabody College
    • Retired in 2001 and was named professor emeritus; had a community service award named after him by Peabody
  • Inducted into the North Carolina A&T HOF, South Carolina State HOF, Tennessee State HOF, Tennessee Sports HOF (1994) and Vanderbilt Athletics HOF (2010)
  • Passed away in 2002 at age 76; Martin was very active in the Nashville community and upon his passing, the Ed Martin Foundation for At-Risk Youth was established
    • The Ed Martin Academy was named in his honor in 1997; the alternative learning facility serves at risk middle schoolers in the Nashville area

Ed Martin Coaching Tree

  • Don Corbett (North Carolina A&T, Lincoln College)
  • Ed Meyers (Tennessee State)


^ overall record includes head coaching positions at the NCAA Division I and Division II levels; the SC State program was D-II during Martin’s tenure and Tennessee State’s was D-II at the start of his tenure before transitioning to Division I in 1977