Monday, April 30, 2018

Gene Forman in the news

=Sept. 14, 1961, Daily Chronicle of Centralia, Wash.: 

Toledo High head football coach Ted Hippi is preparing his team for the 1961 season. Toledo has "13 lettermen returning to the fold, including an all-senior backfield of good speed. Big question mark in the ... backfield is at quarterback. Gene Forman, 204-pound senior, was figured to run in the quarterback slot this season. But, the big ex-lineman injured his ankle during the summer and has been unable to turn out so far this season. Hippi said the ankle was not responding satisfactorily to treatment. Tentatively set to fill in at the quarterback slot is Jim Tharp, 130-pound senior letterman."

=Sept. 12, 1963, Daily Chronicle of Centralia, Wash.:

Two Toledo athletes at Linfield's football practices are letterman Gary Olson and Gene Forman.

=Nov. 2, 1966, photo by Jim Vincent, staff photographer, The Oregonian

1966 Press Photo Linfield Football Star Gene Forman in Hospital with Neck Brace

"GENE FORMAN ... ex-Linfield football star faces toughest challenge."

=Nov 4, 1966, Daily Chronicle from Centralia, Washington
(With edits)

Former Toledoen: Friends Rally To Provide Aid for Injured Athlete

By Ken Mark, sports editor, The Daily Chronicle

A childhood dream nearing reality for a Lewis County son was abruptly shattered last August in the pain and din of a crashing auto.

Gene Forman, who as a child carried a constant hope of some day performing in the professional football ranks, today lies in a Portland hospital bed facing the possibility of never walking again.

He is at Providence hospital. The former Toledo high school athlete, the son of Mr. and Mrs. Floyd Forman, now of Longview, went from a three-sport all-conference basketball career in high school in 1962 to Linfield College at McMinnville, Ore.

A 6-5 tackle weighing about 255 pounds he earned both all-star and Little All-American honors. Professional scouts made treks to the school, eager to speak with the young athlete. Then the dream was shattered. Driving his small foreign car near McMinnville, Gene fell asleep at the wheel. The car plunged from the road hurling him to the ground. He is now paralyzed from the waist down. But his spirit remains high.

In an effort to help with the growing medical expenses, a group of Forman's friends, headed by Hal Laycoe, coach of the Portland Hockey club, formed a committee to obtain financial help. "Gene is a wonderful young man, facing a frightful fate,' Laycoe was quoted. We want to help. Laycoe's son, Bob, Gene's college buddy and also a Linfield football teammate, quickly volunteered to head the drive. Also endorsing the effort is Paul Durham, the Linfield coach.

Quick to lend a hand have been Toledo residents who recalled Gene's high school career. A committee headed by Ted Hippi, Toledo High-School principal and Gene's former football coach, has been formed. Hippi has asked all those in Lewis County who would like to help Gene to forward donations to any of the following: George Murdock, Mrs. Beverly Holland, Keith Olson, Mrs. Wit ma Olson, Ruben Turner, Leroy Cox, Ray Winters, Bill Wight, Bill Jones and Hugh Kalich, all Toledo. He added that checks may be made payable the "Gene Forman Fund."

=Jan. 5, 1967 edition of the Daily Chronicle of Centralia, Wash., includes:

Review of 1966 sports year. In the month of August: Gene Forman, well-known to Lewis County as a Toledo high school and Linfield College athletic star, was seriously injured in an automobile accident. He was paralyzed in the crash.

=Oct. 1, 1974, edition of  The Mexia Daily News of Mexia, Texas. Same Associated Press (AP) story also appeared in other newspapers.

Wheelchair Coach Believes He'll Walk

RIDDLE, Ore. (AP) — "There are some limitations to coaching from a wheelchair," admits Gene Forman, who might have been a professional football player if it hadn't been for an auto accident eight years ago. "When I started looking for a coaching job, a lot of people said there was no way I could coach because I was in a wheelchair," said Forman, 30, who broke his neck in the accident. "I don't blame people for it," he said, "but I feel I've proved them wrong." Forman was named head football coach at Riddle High School this year after being an assistant coach for six years at the small school in Riddle, a town of 1,000 located 20 miles south of Roseburg in southwest Oregon. A month after the accident in 1966, "the doctors told me I would never walk again and that I had one chance in 10 million of recovering movement below my chest." Forman, who was an offensive tackle at Linfield College in McMinnville, Ore., wouldn't buy that. "I've been slowly progressing to where I am now," he said. "I have the use of my arms and can walk by using a walker. Late at night I go out and walk around my house. "I still strive to walk," says Forman, who was a Northwest Conference all-star selection in his junior year. 
"I've learned to live with myself, but I know I'll never completely accept it. I believe someday I'll be able to walk again." The 6-foot-4, 212-pound Forman, who weighed 240 pounds while at Linfield, says 1974 "has been a great year. My legs have been getting stronger and I've improved 80 per cent since the start of the year. Getting the head football job has helped," he said. "Maybe 1975 will be the year I do it."

=2008, Oregon Douglas County Greats: Gene Forman

This Douglas County Great has coached locally for more than 30 years, but most of it has been out of the public spotlight. 
His teams never played in front of thousands of screaming fans and rarely got the publicity they deserved. 

Days Creek head football coach Gene Forman has put together an impressive resume which includes a 97-82 record during his 19 seasons at Riddle High School and a mark of 77-56 in 14 years at Days Creek. 

"I just love coaching whether its eight or 11-man football and a lot depends on the guys you coach with and of course, the kids," Forman said. "I had chances to move on to bigger schools, but I was happy with my friends and my lifestyle here in Douglas County." 

Forman graduated from high school in Toledo, Washington where he played basketball, baseball and track. He also played football for legendary high school coach Ted Hippi. 

After graduation, Forman headed to Linfield College in McMinnville where he was a starting offensive tackle during the 1964-65 seasons. Dreams of a professional football career came to an end shortly after graduating from Linfield when a car accident left Forman paralyzed. 

"I was coming home after pitching in a semi-pro baseball game, when I fell asleep at the wheel." Forman said. "That was the beginning of a new chapter in my life and it's also when I discovered a passion for coaching." 

During his successful career, Forman has twice led his teams to the State Championship game. In the early 1980's, Forman's Irish lost the title game to St. Mary's of Medford. 

His second trip to the finals took place in the late 90's with Days Creek losing to league rival Powers. Of his nearly 180 victories, the head coach says there are a couple of games that stand out. 

"During our run to the title game at Days Creek, Cove came to our place and we were supposed to get 45-pointed," Forman said. "The fans were all around the field and we beat them in the mud, it was exciting." 

Forman resigned from coaching after the 2006 season, but was asked to come back and coach at Days Creek for one more year. So far, this year's team has struggled to a 2-4 record and will probably miss the state playoffs. But win or lose, Forman has enjoyed his years on the sidelines and don't expect him to slow down any time soon. 

"I have stayed close with a lot of my ex-players and I still see many of them," Forman said. "I also plan on spending more time with my four grandchildren." 

=Winter 2016 edition of WILDCAT: The Magazine of Linfield College Athletics

(With edits)

With  his  best  attempt  to  paint  a  picture  of  the  winning  attitude  that  permeates  Linfield’s  athletics program, Gene Forman said succinctly:  “You cannot describe it. But you know it when  you see it.”

Receiving  two  standing  ovations,  Forman  accepted   the   inaugural   Linfield   Inspirational  Award  at  the  Hall  of  Fame  Banquet  on  Nov.  7. 

Going forward, the award will be known as the Gene Forman Inspirational Award.

Suffering a crippling spinal injury just months before  his  senior  year  at  Linfield  was  to  begin,  Forman nonetheless went on to a distinguished teaching  and  coaching  career  at  several  small  high  schools  in  southern  Oregon.

 It  did  not  seem  to  matter  that  Forman  was  bound  to  a  wheelchair for nearly all of his adult life.

Forman  praised  Linfield  for  “having  one  of  the most consistently successful programs in the nation.” 

Of his time playing football for the Wildcats, Forman said, "“I was surrounded by good people,” he said. 

“I’m  proud  I  came  to  Linfield  where  anything  less  than  winning  was  unacceptable.

 After  we  tied a game 6-6 with Chico State in 1962, I can clearly remember just how brutal the following Monday’s practice was.” Forman  drew  chuckles  from  the  audience   when he quoted Yogi Berra’s famous one-liner:  “The first thing I would like to do is thank all the  people who made this day necessary.”

He  credited  his  decision  to  attend  Linfield  to  Ted  Hippi  ’40,  his  football  coach  at  Toledo  (Wash.) High School. Hippi went on to become one of that state’s best prep coaches, compiling an enivable 236-37-2 win-loss record.

Friday, April 27, 2018

Wildcatville video 4/19/2018

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

DEBBIE HARMON FERRY: A champion for her alma mater, hometown


DEBBIE HARMON FERRY: A champion for her alma mater, hometown

“Stopping By” column by Starla Pointer

McMinnville N-R/News-Register
Tuesday April 24, 2018 print edition

When Debbie Harmon Ferry leaves her office in Linfield College's Melrose Hall, she throws her purple coat over her purple dress and grabs her purple umbrella. It's Wednesday — Wildcat Wednesday — so, of course, she's wearing the Linfield color; add a red scarf and her outfit would be perfect for the 1990 graduate, director of alumni relations and die-hard supporter.

It's not likely, though, that anyone would realize it's Wildcat Wednesday just because of Harmon Ferry's ensemble, even if she did include red accessories. For her, the colors are not out of the ordinary.

"I have a lot of purple in my wardrobe," she said. "A lot of purple."

Harmon Ferry has felt part of Linfield since long before she was old enough to enroll in the college. She was six months old when her parents, Dave and Sharon Hansen, moved to McMinnville so her father could become a business professor there.

He later added dean of students to his title. He was a longtime play-by-play announcer for Wildcat games; he's now the color announcer.

Her mother spent many years as costumer for the Linfield theater program.

And that meant young Debbie grew up on campus. She knew the layout of buildings when she was still attending Memorial Elementary School — long before she graduated from McMinnville High School in 1986 and matriculated at the college.


After earning her Linfield degree in 1990, she stayed on as an admissions counselor. She visited high schools telling students about the benefits of attending Linfield.

She switched to the alumni side and became director of alumni and parent relations 20 years ago. In that position, she communicates with graduates, as well as parents of current students, and organizes events and programs for both groups.

For instance, she oversees family weekends and visits from parents on campus. And she plans alumni events all over Oregon and the rest of the country, as well.

"I love to travel," she said. "I love to see alums on the road."

She especially enjoys visiting with graduates whom she first met as high school students. "It's so exciting to see kids when they start and now see how they're succeeding in life."


Harmon Ferry has long been involved in community activities, in addition to those at Linfield.

"I do a lot of volunteering because I was raised with it; Dad was always a big fan of doing volunteer work," she said.

"At first, I felt I should," she said, "but now I absolutely enjoy it. When you're invested in something, the rewards are so great."

When her son, Jacob Harmon, and her stepdaughter were students at Newby Elementary, for instance, she helped with the school's Battle of the Books program. She continued in that capacity after they moved on to Duniway Middle School.

"I like kids," said Harmon Ferry, who has four other stepchildren as well. She also supported BOB because "reading is a good thing. I came to it late, but now I'm a voracious reader, and it's great to see kids grow up loving to read."

Her tastes in reading run the gamut, although she focuses mostly on fiction. She recently read the MacReads book, "The Distance Between Us" by Reyna Grande. Another recent read, which she recommends, is Fredrik Backman's "A Man Called Ove."

She said she always packs a novel when she travels, which she does frequently for her job. In a strange hotel or an unfamiliar city, she said, "it's great to have a book as a friend."

Harmon Ferry served on the Kids on the Block Board. She was involved with KOB's main fundraiser, the Mayor's Charity Ball, for years.

She's on the Ford Family Foundation Board and its scholarship committee. She was on the local board for the United Way a few years ago.

She brings her knowledge of Linfield and her hometown to the board of the McMinnville Downtown Association. "Our downtown is a gem," she said. "A strong downtown is good for a city."

Harmon Ferry has been a board member for Gallery Theater for about two decades and currently is serving as president. She has directed numerous plays there, such as "Anne of Avonlea" and "To Kill a Mockingbird," and acted in many productions, such as "Steel Magnolias" and "It's a Wonderful Life," in which she played Mary Bailey.

Each summer, she takes vacation time from Linfield so she can run Gallery's children's theater camp. It's rewarding to see former campers go on to perform in the community theater's regular shows, she said.

"I see them find something in themselves: confidence, a love of performance, responsibility ..." she said.

Her own involvement with theater goes back to childhood, when her mom was making costumes. "I was raised around theater," said Harmon Ferry, who began acting at Gallery as a teen.

"I love the teamwork of theater," she explained. "I love what it does for kids. And I love what it brings to the community — some stories Gallery brings to the stage need to be told; others are just a nice escape."


Harmon Ferry's father, Dave Hansen, was named Man of the Year in 2006 for his work at Linfield and as a McMinnville City Council member.

She's known many other winners in various categories. Still, she wasn't at all suspicious when Cassie Sollars, the 2004 Woman of the Year, invited her to lunch and last year's Woman of the Year, Mary Martin — whom Harmon Ferry sees frequently at First Baptist Church services — showed up as well.

Over tapas at La Rambla, the three women discussed a common interest: books.

After awhile, though, Harmon Ferry said she became curious: What was their real purpose?

"Then they told me," she said, still shaking her head in surprise.

Discovering she will receive a Distinguished Service Award as Woman of the Year left her "humbled, honored ... it was fantastic," she said.

Now she's looking forward to attending the DSA banquet with her husband, Dave Ferry, and other family members.

She plans to use her time on the podium to urge others to take part in their community.

"I want people to get involved," she said. "Volunteering is rewarding in itself."

She wants to tell them, as well, "how proud I am to be part of Gallery, of Linfield and of the McMinnville community."

With her community activities, her family and her work, she said, "My life is busy. There's always something going on. And that's really fun."

Sunday, April 15, 2018

L&C at Linfield Catball/Softball doubleheader 4/14/2018

Doubleheader: By same 8-5 score, Linfield won both games. Final home game for six Catball players and one assistant coach. All are graduating in May 2018.

Saturday, April 07, 2018

Maybe you didn’t hear this about that 1965 Linfield football game?

Paul Durham-coached Linfield played in the NAIA national football championship in Augusta, Georgia, on Dec. 11, 1965. The Wildcats lost 33-0 to the St. John’s University Johnnies.

Starting center for Linfield was Brian Petersen, a 210-pound sophomore from Medford.

Petersen knows the reputation of John Gagliardi, who was St. John’s highly successful head football, 1953-2012.

Says Brian, “That coach has been heralded as saint, but he didn’t send us (Linfield) film to scout until shortly before the game. Coach Durham sent our film right after we knew who Linfield was going to play. They were a good team that didn’t need that kind of advantage.”

A story in the Oregonian sports section of Wed., Dec. 8, 1965, says, “For Durham, the exposure to the St. John’s tactical makeup is limited to the viewing of one film – last Saturday’s quarterfinal victory over Fairmont State of Virginia. Films of the Jays’ 34-0 shellacking of Gustavus Adolphus played in good weather and 10-0 blanking of Concordia under adverse conditions have apparently been waylaid in the mails somewhere.”

Oregonian article was written Tue., Dec. 7, 1965, and published the next day, Wed., Dec. 8, the same day Linfield traveled to Georgia to prepare for the game.


Footnote: These days, athletic teams of St. John's University of Collegeville, Minn. (near St. Cloud, Minn.) are called the "Johnnies." Oregonian article uses "Jays" as the team's nickname. The article said, "...the Johnnies, or Jays as they're now called..."

Linfielder Paul Durham: Did you know he was a high school ice hockey and soccer coach?

Paul Durham, August 1993, Honolulu. 
During his 80th birthday party.

Story by McMinnville N-R/News Register, August 1989. Minor editing by and additional info from Wildcatville, March 2018.

Friday, Aug. 11, 1989
McMinnville N-R/News-Register
McMinnville, Oregon

Paul Durham’s touch lingers on at Linfield

Editor’s note: Paul H. Durham/Paul Henry Durham, longtime Linfield College football coach and athletic director, will be inducted Saturday evening, March 12, 1989, at the into the Oregon Sports Hall of Fame in Portland at the Red Lion Inn/Jantzen Beach. In a two-part series, the News-Register will trace the career of Durham, who successes are still being felt today. Part 1 will focus on the early years. On Monday, Part 2 will follow Durham as he brings Linfield to national prominence.

N-R Staff Writer

Paul Durham is speaking of former Linfield College President Harry Dillin and ex-Oregon Journal Sports Editor George Pasero.

So the story goes:

“What both Dr. Dillin and George tell me is that Dillin came into Portland, kind of snooping around and about for prospective coaches.

“The head coach there (at Linfield) had been Wayne Harn … Dillin came into Portland and got to talk to George Pasero and Pasero says, ‘Why the hell don’t you hire Durham?’

“So Dillin noses around a while and finally we talked and I got the job.”

A simple conversation between a college president and a prep sports expert in the early part of 1948, and it completely changed small-college athletics in the Northwest, possibly even in the country.

For Paul Durham took over the Linfield program in 1948, and the following year he assumed the additional duties of athletic director.

--Note: Henry Lever was football coach nine seasons, 1930-1938. Wayne Harn coached 1939, but left for military service. Lever was coach 1941-1942. No football 1943-1945 during World War II. Harn coached 1946-1947.  When Durham became football coach in 1948, Lever remained at Linfield through 1948-1949, serving that school year as athletic director. First year for Durham as athletic director was 1949-1950.

For 20 years Durham coached Linfield had took the school from run-of-the-mill to consistent winner, laying the groundwork for 15 years later when protégé Ad Rutschman’s team captured the national championship.

--Note: Henry Lever coached Durham and Roy Helser (both members of Linfield Class of 1936, although Helser graduated in 1941) in all sports at Linfield. The three season Durham and Helser were co-head men's basketball coach were 1949-1950, 1950-1951, 1951-1952. Ad Rutschman attended Linfield 1950-1954, graduating in 1954. Durham and Helser (a football assistant coach) coached Rutschman in football at Linfield and in basketball. Helser coached Rutschman in baseball.

Linfield goes back further than 1948 for Durham, though. As a graduate of Portland’s Franklin High School, his older brother, Phil, encouraged him to attend, as did football coach Henry Lever. (Philip C. Durham/Philip Calvin Durham graduated from Linfield in 1935, a year before Paul.)

After graduating from Linfield in 1936, Paul Durham went to work.

“I went out to Yamhill (High School), for four years … four great years.”

Yamhill did not field a football team.

“The small towns, when you’re coach – it’s just the greatest experience you could ever have. They treat you like a million bucks,” Durham said.

While at Yamhill High he taught “Glee Club and English and history and social studies and I don’t know what all. Four years at a small school and you’re liable to teach anything.”

After his four years in Yamhill, he returned to his alma mater, Franklin High.

“I assisted in football and coached the ice hockey and soccer teams,” he said, “which I knew nothing about. I was a babysitter. They had to have faculty go to practice and stand around. But there were always some kids on the team who know the sports, seniors, who the other kids replaced, and they would run the operation pretty much … They did the coaching.”

Things were so bad in hockey, Durham said, “I had to learn what a blue line was.”

He crossed back and forth between Franklin and Portland’s High School of Commerce, now Cleveland High School.

He was at Franklin in 1948 when Dillin and Pasero had their little chat.

--Note: Thanks to Dr. Bob Gill’s book “It’s In Their Blood: Oregon Football Coaches and Their Legacies,” we know Durham coached basketball and baseball 1936-1939 at Yamhill. He was at Franklin 1940-1941 coaching JV football. At Commerce 1942-1945 he was a football assistant and head basketball and baseball coach. At Franklin 1946 he was head football, basketball and baseball coach and head football and baseball coach in 1947.

Making the transition from high school to college was easy in the post-World War II days, Durham said. He didn’t need to recruit because hordes of men getting out of the service were swarming the campuses.

He persuaded three or four players from the Shrine team he assisted on that summer to attend Linfield.

“That’s about all the recruiting I was able to do. We didn’t have any recruiting money. I didn’t know anything about recruiting.

“In fact, we never did have any money,” he said with a smile.

Durham’s first year, the football Wildcats were 3-6, with wins over Lower Columbia Junior College, the University of British Columbia and Oregon College of Education (Western Oregon University). None of those wins was by more than a touchdown.

Football remained at the top of Durham’s list the next year, but the list grew longer.

He added athletic director as a title, then became coach of the basketball team with longtime friend Roy Helser.

Helser, who is a member of the Oregon Sports Hall of fame for his prowess with the Portland Beavers, had not coached basketball in years. So Durham agreed to coach with him until he felt confident going it alone.

“We always kind of kidded about it,” said Helser, who still lives in McMinnville, “because whenever we called a timeout, here I’d have some kid pinned, then he could take over, and then another. We’d have about four of us. Even the fans got a kick out of it.”

The job-sharing arrangement lasted for three years.

“I can truly say we never had any disagreement between us,” Helser said. “Paul understood me about as well as anybody could understand me.”

Monday, Aug. 14, 1989
McMinnville N-R/News-Register
McMinnville, Oregon

Durham lives the quiet life

Home base now Hawaii

Editor’s note: This is the second installment of a two-part series examining the career of Linfield’s longtime athletic director and football coach, Paul Durham, who was inducted into the Oregon Sports Hall of Fame on Saturday in Portland. Part 1 Friday examined how Durham came to Linfield and what happened in the early years.

N-R Staff Writer

The first eight years of Paul Durham’s tenure as Linfield College football coach were not marked with overwhelming success or failure.

His records ranged from 3-6 – in his first year in 1948 twice more, to 6-3 in 1950. In fact, for the first eight years, he had a losing record of 32-35-4. Over the next 12 years, though things would change.

When sportswriters today write of Linfield College’s astounding streak of winning seasons, which now stands at 33, it is continued by Ad Rutschman’s 21 years.

But for 12 years Paul Durham turned a perennial bridesmaid into one of the brides.

Over those dozen seasons, Durham’s teams ran up a record of 90-16-6 and won seven Northwest Conference championships. It had been 21 years since the Wildcats had won a league title.

Offense changes

Durham changed his offense in the late 1950s after watching the success of Humboldt State University, coached by Phil Sarboe, a former Washington State coach.

While serving on the NAIA/National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics Executive Committee, Durham was assigned to escort Humboldt State to an NAIA playoff game.

Sarboe and Durham exited to a kitchen during a party.

“In about three hours I learned the Flying T,” Durham said.

It was known as the Flying T formation and overloaded the strong side with two tackles and an end.

“Nobody ever really defensed it,” Durham claims.

Nobody ever argued the point, however.

Five years after Durham began his winning way, the Wildcats made their first postseason.

In 1961, Whittier (Calif.) College was the visitor and Linfield was the victor in the NAIA Western Playoffs, nabbing an 18-7 win at Maxwell Field.

Then it was on to the national championship game – the Camellia Bowl – the NAIA’s title game for three seasons in Sacramento, Calif.

Against Pittsburg State University of Kansas, the Wildcats were facing the top-ranked team in the nation. Linfield lost, but the game was one the Wildcats felt they should have won.

A touchdown in the opening minute gave the Gorillas a 6-0 lead that kept up to the fourth quarter. Pittsburgh State scored for a 12-0 lead and then Linfield scored.

Linfield got the ball late in the game but couldn’t score.

The loss was Linfield’s only of the season.

‘Dodging with Durham’

While Durham was leading the Wildcats to the heights, he also found time to edit sports for the News-Register, in addition to teaching at Linfield.

His daily column – “Dodging with Durham” – was an N-R staple for years, until Durham left for Hawaii in 1968.

“Paul would come down to the office about 5:30 in the afternoon after practice,” said N-R Publisher and then editor Phil Bladine. “We would shoot the breeze many times a week. He is such a great personality … one of the sharpest wits of anybody’s you’ll ever know.”

The Cats returned to the national playoffs in 1964, despite consecutive eight-win seasons in between.

Durham recalled that 28-6 semifinal loss to Concordia (Minn.) College in Fargo, N. D., on Nov. 26, 1964, because of the extreme cold.

“The wind chill factor took it to 20, 25 below,” Durham said, “and we had some kids from Hawaii on that team who couldn’t even stand up it was so cold. Somebody’s relative had some heaters back there (by the benches), but it didn’t make any difference.”

Linfield returned to the finals by beating Sul Ross State of Texas 30-22 in a semifinal game held in Texas.

In the finals, held in Augusta, Ga., Linfield suffered one of its worst playoff defeats ever, 33-0, at the hands of St. John’s College of Minnesota.

Produces coaches

Rivaling Durham’s football coaching feats were what the Linfield physical education department was turn out: coaches.

Hundreds of coaches.

It helped the recruiting, Durham said.

“Some of them graduated at the end of my first and second year,” Durham said. “Pretty soon they’re out getting coaching jobs. We kept in contact with them. They started helping send back kids.”

“That to be has been the life blood of Linfield’s athletic success --- the fact that alumni, in particular teacher and coaches, have sent back, over the 20 years I was there, several thousand different athletes.”

Two years later, in 1968, another Linfield alumnus took over the program – Ad Rutschman.

Durham resigned the football coach’s position in February 1968, following the 1967 season. In his “Dodging with Durham” column he wrote of spending Thursdays and Fridays walking around like he had a football in his stomach – with the football overinflated.

Health leads to resignation

“I had ulcers,” Durham said, “I just had to quit coaching around 32 years. I was 54 and had to quit coaching.

“In the last two, three years during the season the only day I felt good was Wednesday. I’d get over the previous game by Wednesday and on Thursday my belly would be hurting again.”

Durham found that pressure affected him differently that some coaches.”

“Some guys, Rutschman handles it well,” he said. “He’s a little older than I was when I quite. I loved it, just loved it, but it got so I couldn’t do it anymore.”

He resigned as football coach, then a little later as athletic director, after he was offered the athletic director spot at the University of Hawaii, a NCAA/National Collegiate Athletic Association Division I school.

He worked for eight years in that position, but the bane of many athletic directors – alumni – eventually caused him to step into a supervisory position in the university’s education department.

Hawaii not trouble free

After the University of Hawaii Rainbows began having some success in football, the alumni began pushing for national championship-caliber teams, not always above the table.

Two years after Durham stepped down as athletic director, the NCAA stepped in with probation and the banning of three regents – the university’s directors – for violations of the association rules.

Paul and Kitty Durham, August 1993, Honolulu.

Durham retired in 1981 and still lives in Waikiki in a condominium with his wife, Kitty. They have traveled extensively, and Durham enjoys reading and golfing.

He has season tickets to the Rainbows’ football and basketball teams and watches baseball games.

Durham had three children. Jeff, a former McMinnville School District athletic director who holds the same post at Forest Grove High School; Terry, a National Basketball Association referee and Portland resident, and Cathy, an ex-stewardess, who lives in Glen Ellyn, Illinois, a Chicago suburb. All graduated from McMinnville High School and Linfield. Jeff and Terry were successful athletes at the high school and college.

SIDEBAR: Durham, Linfield highlight banquet

N-R Staff Writer

PORTLAND – Paul Durham delighted the Oregon Sports Hall of Fame banquet’s biggest audience ever with tales of his days as football coach and athletic director at Linfield College.

Durham was one of eight inductees into the Hall of Fame. More than a thousand people crowed the Red Lion Inn/Jantzen Beach for the ceremonies marking the Hall’s 10th anniversary.

And, Linfield played a major role, with an unofficial count seeing the college mentioned more times than any, save the University of Oregon and Oregon State University.

The program opened with the Parade of Champions of 40 Hall of Famers. One who didn’t make the walk – due to minor foot surgery – was longtime Linfield baseball and basketball coach Roy Helser, who was inducted in 1981 for his feats in Pacific Coast League baseball.

Several sportswriters and sportscasters were asked to recall their favorite games to cover, with the games and narration being displayed on two huge video screens placed in the corners.

KOIN-TV’s Rick Metsger waxed nostalgic about Linfield’s three national football titles in the 1980s.

After the dinner, four high school students were presented with $1,500 scholarships. The awards were based on academic achievement, athletic accomplishment and financial need.

Yamhill-Carlton High School graduate Amy Weise was the first honored. She graduated with a 4.0 grade point average and excelled in three sports. She plans to attend Linfield.

Jason Saunders of Cottage Grove High School was another awardee who plans to attend Linfield. He also was a triple sports threat and had a 3.89 GPA.

The Don Kirsch Memorial Award, named for the former UO baseball coach, was given along with a $1,500 scholarship to Linfield graduate David Safford.

Safford was District 2 NAIA/National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics Player of the Year with an 11-6 record, setting three Wildcat baseball pitching records in the process.

Safford plans to pursue a career in 

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Banquet: Tales and singing delight audience

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business or coaching. He graduated with a 3.4 GPA in business and economics. The scholarship is awarded to a college baseball player who best combines academic achievement, athletic accomplishment and financial need.

Durham was introduced third among the eight inductees and had the audience eating out of his hand with his stories.

The coach, who led Linfield for 20 years and so many wins, was at the head of the class once again.

Stealing a few, earning a few

He told of stealing a few wins and earning a few wins.

One of his teams stole a road win from a school whose officials were all alumni. Later, the same team came to Linfield, whose officials were also alumni.

The only difference? “They weren’t prejudiced,” Durham said, “just loyal.”

He spoke eloquently of the lessons he had been taught.

“Some of the greatest things I’ve learned have been from the teams I’ve played against,” he said.

He listed the many, many people who influenced his life. And then he broke into song.

He promised he would embarrass his family, sitting together at a table, by singing a song he and two friends made up in college.

A friend of Durham’s – Chappie King – was recently staying in a nursing home in the last days of a long life.

Chappie’s song to remember

“He didn’t remember a lot of things,” Durham said. But the song was one of them.

It wasn’t a particularly noteworthy song. It was about a professor at the school. He only sang two stanzas in his singer’s voice – Durham was once in the Glee Club.

But it spoke of a simpler time, when students sat in their frat houses and did things like compose songs about professors.

Embarrassing? No.

The warm applause following his 15 minute appearance was a fitting punctuation to an exclamation point career.

Paul Durham is in the Hall of Fame.

SIDEBAR: Doing Durham
Paul Durham’s Linfield Coaching Record

1948   3-6
1949   4-4
1950   6-3
1951   3-3-3
1952   5-3-1
1953   5-4
1954   3-6
1955   3-6
1956   6-1-2*
1957   8-1
1958   7-1-1
1959   5-3-1
1960   7-2
1961   10-1*
1962   8-0-1*
1963   8-1
1964   8-1-1*
1965   8-1*
1966   7-2
1967   8-1
Career   122-51-10

Photos with this story by Wildcatville August 1993 in Honolulu during Paul Durham’s 80th birthday party. One shows him with his wife, Kitty. In another, he displays birthday celebration t-shirt.