Written by Bryan Messerly
One of the top defensive backs in school history, Peterstown, W.Va., native Steve Newberry holds the all-time career interceptions record at WVU with 20.
Back to Hall Of Fame
A four-year letterman from 1980-83 playing for coach Don Nehlen, Newberry registered 191 tackles, including 138 solo, with three tackles for loss during his career. A part-time starter as a freshman, Newberry recorded 42 tackles and had a team-high six interceptions, the most picks by a freshman at that time. He had 37 tackles and four interceptions as a sophomore, 65 tackles and five interceptions as a junior and 47 tackles and five interceptions as a senior. Newberry had 20 career passes broken up and returned 13 punts during his career for 162 yards.
Newberry played in three bowl games during his Mountaineer career: the upset win over Florida in the 1981 Gator Bowl, the 1982 Gator Bowl against Florida State and the 1983 Hall of Fame Bowl comeback victory over Kentucky.
Newberry set the career interceptions record against Pacific with the 16th pick of his career on Sept. 10, 1983. He also had a career best eight tackles in that game. Newberry had seven solo tackles in the Gator Bowl win over Florida. He broke up four passes against eventual national champion Miami on Oct. 29, 1983.
As a senior, he earned Associated Press honorable mention All-America honors and was named to the AP all-East first team. Newberry received the Ideal Mountaineer Award, exhibiting the characteristics of a West Virginia football player – a positive attitude, solid academic standing, outstanding leadership, perseverance on the field, outstanding athletic achievement and good citizenship. Newberry is a member of the 1980-89 WVU all-time football team.
Newberry graduated from WVU with a bachelor’s degree in physical education. Following his graduation, Newberry signed a free agent contract with the Dallas Cowboys in 1984 and became owner of Newberry Ford, Inc., in Pearisburg, Va., in 1990. He has served as an assistant football coach at Peterstown High since 1991, before it became James Monroe High in 1994. He helped Peterstown High to the Class A state championship in 1991. He also managed the West Virginia Rattlers in the Carolina-Virginia Collegiate Athletic League, a summer baseball squad for college students.
Newberry, and his wife, Lynn, have two children. Their son, Nick, was a baseball player at West Virginia Wesleyan and daughter, Kelly, was a volleyball player at Concord.