- Amos Alonzo Stagg
College coach infobox
Name = Amos Alonzo Stagg
Caption = Amos Alonzo Stagg, 1906
August 16 1862
Birthplace = West Orange,
DateOfDeath = Dda|1965|2|17|1862|8|16
Sport = Football
Championships = 1905 National Champions
1899/1905/1907/1908/1913/1924 Big Ten Conference Champions
1936/1938/1940/1941/1942 Northern California Athletic Conference Champions
CFbDWID = 2209
Player = Y
Years = 1885–1889
Team = Yale
Position = End
Coach = Y
CoachYears = 1890–1891
CoachTeams = Williston Seminary
Amos Alonzo Stagg (
August 16 1862– March 17 1965) was an American collegiate coach in multiple sports, primarily football, and an overall athletic pioneer. He was born in West Orange, New Jersey, and attended Phillips Exeter Academy. Playing at Yale, where he was a divinity student, and a member of the Psi Upsilonfraternity and the secret Skull and Bonessociety [ Alexandra Robbins, "Secrets of the Tomb: Skull and Bones, the Ivy League, and the Hidden Paths of Power", Little, Brown and Company, 2002, page 126] [Robin Lester, "Stagg's University: The Rise, Decline, and Fall of Big-time Football at Chicago", University of IllinoisPress, 1995, page 9.] , he was an end on the first All-Americateam, selected in 1889.
Stagg became the first paid football coach at Williston Seminary, a
secondary school, in 1890 and 1891. This was also Stagg's first time receiving pay to coach football. He would coach there one day a week while also coaching full time at Springfield College. He moved on to coach at the University of Chicago(1892-1932), and the College of the Pacific (1932-46), after he was forced to retire from Chicago at the age of 70. During his career, he developed numerous basic tactics for the game (including the man in motion and the lateral pass), as well as some equipment. From 1947 to 1952 he served as a co-head coach with his son at Susquehanna Universityin Pennsylvania. In 1924, he served as a coach with the U.S. Olympic Track and Field team in Paris.
He was elected to the
College Football Hall of Fameas both a player and a coach in the charter class of 1951 and was the only individual honored in both areas until the 1990s. Influential in other sports, he developed basketballas a five-player sport and was elected to the Basketball Hall of Famein its first group of inductees in 1959. A pitcheron his college baseballteam, he declined an opportunity to play professional baseball but nonetheless impacted the game through his invention of the batting cage.
March 11, 1892, Stagg, still an instructor at the YMCA School, played in the first public game of basketball at the Springfield (Mass.) YMCA. A crowd of 200 watched as the student team crushed the faculty, 5-1. Stagg scored the only basket for the losing side.
Known as the "grand old man" of college football, Stagg died in
Stockton, California, at 102 years old.
In 1952, Barbara Stagg, Amos' granddaughter, started coaching the high school girls
basketballteam for Slatington High Schoolin Slatington, Pennsylvania.
Two high schools in the United States - one in
Palos Hills, Illinois, and the other in Stockton, California- and an elementary school in Chicago, Illinois, are named after him. The NCAA Division IIInational football championship game, played in Salem, Virginia, is named after him. The athletic stadium at Springfield Collegeis named Stagg Field. The football field at Susquehanna Universityis named Amos Alonzo Stagg Field in honor of both Stagg Sr. and Jr. And he was the namesake of the University of Chicago's old Stagg Fieldwhere, on December 2, 1942, a team of Manhattan Projectscientists led by Enrico Fermicreated the world's first controlled, self-sustaining nuclear chain reactionunder the west stands of the abandoned stadium, as well as Stagg Memorial Stadium, Pacific's football and soccer stadium. Phillips Exeter also has a field named for him.
The Amos Alonzo Stagg Collection is held at the University of the Pacific Library, Holt Atherton Department of Special Collections.
Innovations in football
* putting players' names on the backs of their uniforms
man in motion
* numbering plays and playing
Statue of Liberty play
* [http://www.amosalonzostagg.org Amos Alonzo Stagg Fund]
* [http://collegefootball.org/famersearch.php?id=90015 College Football Hall of Fame] - biography as coach
* [http://collegefootball.org/famersearch.php?id=88005 College Football Hall of Fame] - biographer as player
* [http://www.hoophall.com/halloffamers/Stagg.htm Basketball Hall of Fame]
* [http://odaconline.com/staggbowl/about.htm Stagg Bowl - Division III]
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