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Millard (Bill) Easton

Photo of Millard (Bill) Easton

Inducted: 1975, coach

Born: September 13, 1906 - Stinesville, Indiana
Deceased: October 7, 1997

Career Highlights

  • Easton won six NCAA titles at two different universities – Drake and Kansas

Millard "Bill" Easton built a reputation as one of the nation's best coaches at two universities -- Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa, and the University of Kansas. During a coaching career that spanned three decades, Easton produced 32 All-Americans and eight Olympians. Three of those were also Olympic champions and world record holders -- shot putter Bill Nieder, discus thrower Al Oerter and distance runner Billy Mills. As coach at Drake from 1941 through 1947, Easton produced three consecutive NCAA champion cross-country teams, from 1944 through 1946. He also served as director of the famed Drake Relays while he was there. He then moved to Kansas and in the 1950s his Jayhawk teams won the Big Eight cross country, indoor and outdoor track team titles eight years in a tow. His teams won the 1953 national collegiate cross country title and the 1959 and 1960 NCAA outdoor track titles. Before his retirement in 1965, his teams won 39 Big Eight conference championships in cross country and track. He subsequently coached the 1968 Mexican Olympic team. A graduate of Indiana University, Easton was coached by fellow Hall of Famer Billy Hayes.

undergraduate: Indiana (Bloomington, Indiana)


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