Ayers was welcomed to the elite sports hall during the annual Letter Club breakfast held as part of Alumni Weekend activities on April 5 at the college in Demorest.
“I am pleased and honored that Piedmont College selected me to go in their Hall of Fame,” Ayers said.
Aubrey Finch of Lexington introduced Ayers at the Piedmont College Hall of Fame, who was inducted as an honorary member of the Sports Hall of Fame for his achievements on and off the playing field after he graduated in 1949.
A World War II Navy veteran, Ayers taught and coached football at Lavonia, Winder, and Cedartown high schools, winning several region championships and the 1963 state championship at Cedartown, where the field is now named in his honor.
In 1964 he joined the coaching staff at the University of Georgia and worked for 17 years as an assistant to coach Vince Dooley. He is a member of the Stephens County Football Hall of Fame and in 1990 was inducted into the Georgia Sports Hall of Fame in Macon.
Ayers has also been an active fundraiser, particularly for the American heart Association and the Scottish Rite Hospital, which presented him with its Child of the Universe Award. He was named a Piedmont Distinguished Alumni in 2003.
Ayers is also responsible for the annual Doc Ayers/Ray Beck Celebrity Golf Tournament that is held each year in Cedartown.
“I can’t tell you how honored I am to be a member of the Hall of Fame at Piedmont College,” Ayers said. “This is the icing on the cake.”
Ayers noted that when he and another Piedmont member of the Georgia Sports Hall of Fame, Bill Corry of Madison, who was in the audience, were coaches, “We coached everything. We might not have known anything about it, but we coached it.”
Recalling that up until 1937 Piedmont had a football team, Ayers said. “It was a doggone good football team. So why don’t we get busy and start one up. We’ll get Bill Corry to coach it.”
Georgia Governor Sonny Perdue, who played for Ayers at Georgia, wrote a personal letter to Ayers congratulating him on his induction.
Part of the letter reads, “I am so glad to see you doing so well. You are amazing, and I can only hope to be in as good a shape as you one day.”
While Ayers is thrilled to have been inducted into three Hall of Fames, he still wishes his home county would start a Hall of Fame.
“I wish some young people would start a Hall of Fame in Polk County, because there are so many deserving people that should be honored,” Ayers concluded.