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COMO YOU KNOW: Don Faurot

Wednesday, March 20, 2013 | 9:45 a.m. CDT; updated 7:14 p.m. CDT, Friday, May 9, 2014

CoMo You Know, a community wiki, adds context to stories of local interest and serves as a reference tool for readers.

Summary

Don Faurot is a former MU football player, coach and influential figure for which Faurot Field, MU's football field, is named. He served as coach for 19 years, excluding a three-year leave of absence to serve in World War II. He then served as the director of athletics.

Factbox

Born: June 23, 1902

Died: Oct. 19, 1995

Football coach from 1935-1956, with 101 wins, 79 losses, 10 ties during his career.

Background

Don Faurot’s fascination with MU started when he was a child and would sneak onto the field to watch the football team practice. He later played for the team as a college student and was a three-sport letterman from 1922 to 1924. He won a letter in football and was also captain of the basketball team and on the baseball team. In 1935, he became the coach then later became the director of athletics until 1967.

One of Faurot’s largest contributions to MU football was the Split-T formation in 1941. Teams all over the country added this formation to their own playbooks after World War II. It’s still a commonly used formation.

Faurot is a member of the National Football Foundation Hall of Fame and the Missouri Sports Hall of Fame, among others. He led the Tigers to their first bowl game, the Orange Bowl, and first Big Six title in 1939. His accomplishments catapulted MU into the realm of competitive football teams and gained the Tigers a lot of respect.

Faurot Field was officially named after Don Faurot in 1972. This honor meant more to him because he helped to convert the field’s surface back to natural grass during his time as an agricultural graduate student.

Links and sources

Official Missouri Athletics site 

Sports Illustrated article from 1954 about the Split T formation, of which Faurot was an innovator.

An overhead image of Faurot Field

Updated: March 20, 2013


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