|Current Team:||Texas A&M Aggies football|
|Birth Day:||January 15, 1965|
|Height:||in centimeters - N/A|
|Weight:||in kg - N/A|
He played at I-AA William and Mary, where he compiled over 4,700 all purpose yards during his time, and was an All-American.
In 1987, Clemons was drafted by the Kansas City Chiefs of the National Football League. During the 1987 NFL season, Clemons played in eight games, predominantly as a punt returner, where he collected 19 returns for 162 yards.
When Clemons first joined the Toronto Argonauts in 1989, guest running backs coach Tom Cudney nicknamed him "Pinball" because of his running style. His diminutive size and extraordinary balance allowed him to bounce between defensive players much like a pinball inside a pinball machine. During home games, The Who song "Pinball Wizard" would play on the P.A. each time Clemons was involved in a great play. In his first game with the Argonauts, Clemons was named the player of the game. In 1990, Clemons received the CFL's Most Outstanding Player Award after setting a single season record for all-purpose yards (3,300). The following year, Clemons won his very first football championship as his Argonauts defeated the Calgary Stampeders to win the Grey Cup. Clemons went on to win two more Grey Cups as a player when Doug Flutie led Argonauts won back-to-back titles during the 1996 & 1997 seasons. In 1997, Clemons surpassed his own single season all-purpose yards record from 1990 by recording 3,840 all-purpose yards. This mark stood until 2012, when it was broken by Chad Owens. On September 15, 2000, Clemons played his last ever game as an Argonaut. During his 12-year playing career with the Argonauts he set many team records including career pass receptions (682), punt return yards (6,025), punt returns (610), punt return touchdowns (8), kickoff return yards (6,349), and kickoff returns (300). He also set single season single-season punt return yards (1,070 in 1997), punt returns (111 in 1997), and kickoff returns (49 in 1997). Clemons also amassed a career 25,438 combined yards during the regular season, a CFL record.
Upon ending his playing career, Clemons became interim head coach of the Toronto Argonauts in 2000, replacing John Huard, who resigned after compiling a 1–6–1 record. When offered the head coaching job by team general manager J. I. Albrecht, Clemons was reluctant to accept it, wanting to spend more time with his family. According to Clemons, "it was an awkward situation. After saying no, they said do us the favour of going home and discussing it with your family. The burden was that this team, this organization, had given our family so much that Canada was going to be our home. The Argos had everything to do with my family becoming a part of this country. Because of all I had been given I decided it was my time to reciprocate." As interim head coach, Clemons coached the Argos to 6 wins out of their remaining 8 games. He had the interim tag removed from his title at the end of the season. In November 2001, he was promoted to President of the Argonauts and relinquished his role as head coach in the process to Gary Etcheverry.
Currently, Clemons resides in Oakville, Ontario with his wife, Diane (a native Floridian), and three daughters (who were all born in Canada). His oldest daughter, Rachel, is 22, his middle daughter Raven is 19, and his youngest daughter Rylie is now 17. Clemons has described himself (borrowing a quote from C.D. Howe) as an "American by birth but Canadian by choice". In 2000, Clemons became a permanent resident of Canada. It had once been suggested that Clemons had remained an American citizen to rebuff any calls for him to run for political office, such as for mayor of Toronto. Clemons was the subject of Pinball: The Making of a Canadian Hero ( ISBN 978-0-470-83690-3) a biography written by Perry Lefko published in 2006.
From November 2001 to September 2002, Clemons served as the Toronto Argonauts President. He ended his tenure as President to resume his second stint as the team's head coach. In 2003, Clemons shared both responsibilities as the team's head coach & general manager. Though he was the de facto GM of the Argonauts as a result of an administrative shake up of the team, much of the player roster management duties were deferred to Greg Mohns, the team's director of football operations & player personnel. Clemons would relinquish his GM title to Adam Rita at the end of the season. On December 4, 2007, Clemons stepped down as head coach of the Argonauts to become their new Chief Executive Officer. At the end of the 2008 Toronto Argonauts season, Clemons announced that he would no longer act in the day-to-day business of the organization and on May 6, 2009, Bob Nicholson was announced as the new president and chief executive officer of the Argonauts. On that same day, Clemons was appointed the Vice-Chair of the team. In his new role, Clemons advises the president & C.E.O. on key sales and corporate partner programs, significant community initiatives, and brand and media relations. On October 8, 2019, Clemons was named as the new general manager of the team, replacing Jim Popp who was relieved of his GM duties with 4 games remaining in the 2019 Toronto Argonauts season. Clemons would also work closely with John Murphy, the team's vice president of player personnel, in assembling the roster.
When Etcheverry was fired as head coach on September 17, 2002, Clemons returned as head coach on an interim basis with 6 games remaining in the 2002 CFL season. Clemons was officially given the head coaching job again on December 17, 2002, while also relinquishing his role as team president. He remained the head coach until 2007. Clemons was nominated for the Annis Stukus Trophy every year from 2002 to 2007, coming up short each time.
In the 2004 CFL season, Clemons was the first black head coach to ever appear in a Grey Cup game. He became the first black head coach to win a Grey Cup championship during that same Grey Cup game, while also being the second black coach to ever guide his team to a pro football championship in North America. (Darren Arbet of the San Jose SaberCats was the first to do so in 2002 with an ArenaBowl XVI victory.) Clemons downplayed this milestone achievement, saying, "To tell you the truth, I don't know what it means to be the first Black coach in the (Grey) Cup and to win it. I know that I can't do anything by myself, and on my own strength I'm very little good. Anything I accomplish has to be with the aid of individuals, and this team became like a family and is a family, it had very little to do with the colour of my skin".
In April 2007, he visited Calderstone Middle School in Brampton to help start a reading program.
On August 21, 2007, Clemons founded the "Michael 'Pinball' Clemons Foundation" which is dedicated to helping disadvantaged youth.
In 2008, Clemons was inducted into the Canadian Football Hall of Fame. And in 2009, Clemons was also inducted into the Ontario Sports Hall of Fame.
Clemons has the second most head coaching wins in Argonauts history with 67. (Bob O'Billovich is first with 89.) Clemons' record is 67–54–1 in the regular season over parts of seven seasons, with a 6–5 playoff record (including 1–0 in his lone Grey Cup appearance). As a coach, his nickname was often shortened to "Pinner" by his players. After retiring as head coach, he became the team's chief executive officer in 2008.
On March 23, 2009, Clemons appeared on the CTV News @ 6 as a celebrity guest host to do the weather in celebration of Dave Devall's retirement. He is currently working with Marc Kielburger and Craig Kielburger, founders of Free the Children, in an initiative to build schools and clean water systems in Africa.
On November 14, 2012, Clemons visited and gave a speech about life topics in Markham, Ontario for York Regional District School Board's annual QUEST Forum to promote Student Achievement and Well-Being.
In 2012 in honour of the 100th Grey Cup, Canada Post used his image on a series of commemorative postage stamps. The image was also used on presentation posters and other materials to promote the Grey Cup game and other celebrations associated with the centennial.
On February 28, 2014, Clemons visited the Scouts Canada National Leadership summit to speak about teamwork and working as one team to kick off the new program and strategic plan announcement.
On April 28, 2015, Clemons officially became a naturalized citizen of Canada.
Clemons was recognized on February 10, 2017 by the College of William and Mary, his alma mater, with an honorary degree during Charter Day ceremonies, where he also was principal speaker.
Pinball raised three children with his wife Diane Clemons.
Currently, Pinball Clemons is 57 years, 7 months and 3 days old. Pinball Clemons will celebrate 58th birthday on a Sunday 15th of January 2023. Below we countdown to Pinball Clemons upcoming birthday.