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Bill Dellinger
Position: Hall of Fame Inductee
Other Position: 1993 Inductee, Track and Field 1973-98
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Dellinger Photos


He not only was Oregon’s first three-time Olympian, it was the first time an American had qualified for three consecutive Games. After an illustrious collegiate career, he qualified for the Melbourne Olympics the summer after his senior year as a Duck. “He was far and away the best American distance runner,” said his coach, Bill Bowerman, of his first NCAA winner.

The native of Springfield broke the American record for 5,000 meters three times during 1956, dropped the U.S. record in the 1,500 in 1958 and set a pair of indoor world marks the next winter. He won his first collegiate title as a sophomore in the mile, then finished second to teammate Jim Bailey the next year. When Bowerman encouraged him to run longer distances, he started his 5,000 career with an NCAA crown as a senior and owned the Olympic bronze medal eight years later.