After being named all-state during his senior season at Amory High School, in 1960 Billy Tibbett continued his football career at Itawamba Junior College, where he played for an Indian team coached by the late Dudley Miller. And, after his sophomore season, the offensive guard/linebacker/nose guard was named both MACJC All-state and NJCAA All-American.
In one game during 1961, he was involved in 37 of the 54 tackles that night against East Mississippi, including 17 solo tackles.
Tibbett was invited to play in the prestigious East-West
National JUCO All-Star game in Albuquerque, New Mexico. He
transferred to Hardin-Simmons, where he received honors including a
big game against the nationally-ranked Arkansas Razorbacks in a
contest he was named team captain.
While at IJC, Tibbett was a member of the Mirror staff and a sophomore favorite.