Football standout Threadgill remembered at death

Football standout Threadgill remembered at death


Philadelphia native Tyler Burkes Threadgill, a former Mississippi State University and Philadelphia High School football standout, died Sunday morning in a Birmingham hospital after battling COVID-19. He was 36.

Friends described Threadgill as a kind man, a great athlete and “a friend to all.” Philadelphia High School memorialized Threadgill at Harpole Stadium by painting his number 17 on the field. Threadgill was one of the best quarterbacks in the school’s history.

Mississippi State University announced Threadgill’s death Sunday morning.

“Tyler Threadgill, the son of former MSU quarterback Bruce Threadgill and wife Angie Burkes Threadgill, passed away this weekend after a battle with COVID-19,” a Twitter post from the university said. “Tyler played in 18 games during his own MSU football career. Please remember this Bulldog family in your prayers.#MSUFamily.”

Visitation was held from 10 a.m. until noon Thursday, Sept. 16, at Southern Heritage Funeral Home, 475 Cahaba Valley Road, Pelham, Alabama, where Threadgill lived with his wife Leslie and son, John Tyler or "JT." A funeral service followed at noon.

Threadgill’s home church, The First United Methodist Church of Philadelphia, held a prayer vigil Monday.

“Brothers and sisters with a heavy heart, I share this with you,” a Sunday social media post from the church said. “Tyler Threadgill died this morning. During this time let us pray for the Threadgill family.”

The church asked everyone to remember Threadgill’s family, including his wife, son, his parents and brother Garrett.

Threadgill, who grew up in Philadelphia, played for Philadelphia High School and was rated No. 12 overall in the state of Mississippi by SuperPrep in its season-ending, All-American issue, according to his biography on the Mississippi State sports website 

“Tyler was a fun-loving guy who lived every day to the fullest,” said Carly Byars Rounsaville, a longtime Philadelphia friend. “He was a phenomenal athlete who respected his coaches and his teammates throughout his years at Philadelphia High School and Mississippi State University. He always gave 100% to whatever he was doing, on or off the field.”

At Philadelphia High School he was the top-rated wide receiver, awarded Class 3A first-team, all-state honors by the Mississippi Association of Coaches at punter following the 2002 season, named the co-Best Offensive Back in Region 5-3A by the region coaches among many other accolades before going on to play for the Mississippi State Bulldogs from 2003-2006.

“At MSU, Threadill played in 18 games, 10 during his sophomore season. He contributed both on special teams and as a member of the receiving corps and caught one pass (22 yards) and returned seven kickoffs for 159 yards, a 22.7-yard average,” according to

“(He) made one tackle on special teams,” said, “Was on the playing field for just one play, a kickoff return, in his true freshman season, and was granted a redshirt. (He) came to Mississippi State as a speedy, all-around prospect from the state’s high school ranks.”

Threadill’s father, Bruce Threadill, also was a standout quarterback for the Bulldogs for 1975-77 and played eight years of professional football, said.

Tyler Threadgill was an avid golfer having placed second with his brother, Garrett, at a Four-Ball tournament at the Philadelphia Country Club just last month. They came in second at 142 with Jim Eakes and David Hayman placing third at 143.

“Tyler was always the life of the party and kept everyone laughing with his jokes and stories,” Byars said. “Tyler loved his family and friends unconditionally and will forever be missed by so many. If I had to sum up Tyler in a few words, it would be that he was, ‘A friend to all.’”

Tyler was a member of the Church of the Highland, a member of the Ross Bridge Golf League, an M-Club alumni member, and the Mississippi State Alumni Association-Alabama Chapter. He was also named one of Birmingham’s Top 20 under 40 for National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisers.

Preceding him in death were his grandparents, Billy Joe Burkes; Joy D. Threadgill; Bobby P. McDaniel; and Majorie Webster Threadgill. He is survived by his wife, Leslie Bullard Threadgill; his son, John Tyler Threadgill; his parents, Bruce and Angie Threadgill; his brother, Garrett Rhys Threadgill; and grandmother, Carlotta Burkes McDaniel.

In lieu of flowers, the family will be establishing a Mississippi State Scholarship Fund in Tyler’s memory. Those details are pending and will be announced at a later date.

The Philly Football Facebook page posted Wednesday:

"The Tornado Football Family would like to take a moment to reflect and honor the life of former student and quarterback, Tyler Threadgill. We are saddened by the news of Tyler’s passing. We send our deepest sympathy and prayers to his wife Leslie, son John Tyler, his parents, Bruce and Angie Threadgill and brother, Garrett Threadgill. Tyler was one of the most memorable quarterbacks in Philly football history. His memories and legacy will forever reign in the halls of Philly High and the green grass of Harpole Stadium. May God’s love and peace be your comfort and guiding light now and forever.

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