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Aug 23, 2022

Two-Time Clemson Soccer National Champion Jamey Rootes Passes

CLEMSON, S.C. — Jamey Rootes, a starting All-ACC midfielder on Clemson’s 1987 National Championship soccer team, who later became the longtime president of the NFL’s Houston Texans, passed away Sunday in Houston, Texas.   

Quote from Head Men's Soccer Coach Mike Noonan

The Clemson soccer family is devastated by the news of Jamey’s passing. He was an icon of our program. No matter how much success he had in his life, some of his greatest memories he always recounted to me was winning national championships and the love he had for his teammates and Clemson. At this time it is important to remember that if we ever need help of any kind, we need to reach out to each other. This is the purpose of all those connected to our Clemson Soccer Family.

Rootes lettered as a freshman on Clemson’s 1984 National Championship team, then was a starting midfielder on the 1987 National Championship team.  He is one of just five student-athletes in any Clemson Olympic sport to letter on two different national championship teams.

As a senior in 1987, Rootes was named an Academic All-American by CoSIDA and the NSCAA.  He was named to the ACC Academic Honor Roll three of his four years at Clemson.

After graduating from Clemson in the spring of 1988, Rootes earned his MBA at Indiana University, where he also served as an assistant soccer coach.

Rootes later became the general manager of the Columbus (Ohio) Crew of the MLS.    

When the Houston Texans were granted an NFL franchise, owner Bob McNair hired Rootes to be the team’s first president.  Rootes served in that position for 20 years until he resigned in February of 2021.

Rootes had recently accepted a position at Rice University to become the department head for the school’s sports management program.

Quote from Texans co-founder Janice McNair, Texans chairman and CEO Cal McNair and Texans foundation vice president Hannah McNair

We are heartbroken to learn that former Houston Texans President Jamey Rootes has passed away. For two decades, Jamey Rootes led our business operations with an unwavering commitment to Houston and the Houston Texans. We are grateful for his steadfast leadership and immeasurable contributions to our team. Our thoughts are with Jamey’s wife, Melissa, and their two children during this extremely difficult time.