Hall of Fame Athlete

Dean Benson '56

Dean Benson '56

  • Track and Field
  • Hall of Fame Class of 1992
Dean Benson still holds the Willamette school record in the high hurdles (13.9) and won an NAIA championship in that event as a junior in 1955. He also won the Northwest Conference high hurdles crown four straight years and was a two-time District champion, after the district was formed in 1955. As a senior, he placed third in his specialty at the NAIA meet. In 1956, he was fourth in the high hurdles during the Olympic trials. In football, Benson was an honorable mention all-Conference wide receiver and later was offered a tryout with the San Francisco 49ers. He was head track and field coach at Medford High School for 32 years and was an assistant in football for 29 seasons. His 1964 boy track team won the Oregon state title and four Medford football teams won state crowns during his tenure. Bensonís top two track stars at Medford were Bob McIntyre, what was part of a word record 400-yard relay team at Stanford, and Dick Fosbury, an Olympic high jump champion.
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