July 9, 2012
EAST LANSING, Mich. - Former legendary Michigan State head coaches and College Football Hall of Famers Clarence "Biggie" Munn and Hugh Duffy Daugherty will have their names added to Spartan Stadium's "Ring of Fame" prior to MSU's Oct. 13 Homecoming game against Iowa, according to an announcement made Monday, July 9 by Athletics Director Mark Hollis. Munn and Daugherty, who combined to win 163 games and six National Championships, become the first coaches to be added to the "Ring of Fame," joining former Spartan All-Americans and College Football Hall of Famers Don Coleman, George Webster, Charles "Bubba" Smith, Brad Van Pelt, John Pingel and Gene Washington, plus former MSU President John Hannah.
Munn and Daugherty will have their names added to the west upper deck of Spartan Stadium, alongside the signage that recognizes Michigan State's six National Championship seasons. The names of the seven other "Ring of Fame" members appear on the east upper deck.
In just seven seasons from 1947-53, Munn transformed Michigan State into one of the winningest and most respected programs in the nation, as he produced a remarkable record of 54-9-2 (.846). During his tenure, the Spartans won back-to-back National Championships in 1951 and 1952, rattled off a school-record 28-game winning streak, and won the 1953 Big Ten Co-Championship in the school's inaugural season in the conference. He capped off his illustrious career with a 28-20 victory over fifth-ranked UCLA in the 1954 Rose Bowl. Over his final four seasons, Munn compiled a 35-2 record (.946), including four consecutive Top 10 finishes in the final Associated Press and United Press International Polls from 1950-53. He was named National Coach of the Year by the American Football Coaches Association in 1952 after leading Michigan State to a perfect 9-0 record and the consensus National Championship. Munn, who produced 18 first-team All-Americans, became the only coach to beat Notre Dame's Frank Leahy three years in a row (1950-52). He was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1959.
In 19 seasons as Michigan State's head coach (1954-72), Daugherty posted a 109-69-5 record (.609) and led the Spartans to four National Championships (1955, 1957, 1965 and 1966). He guided Michigan State to a combined record of 19-1-1 in 1965-66, as the Spartans won back-to-back Big Ten and National Championships. Seven of his teams ranked among the nation's Top 20, including six Top 10 finishes. A two-time National Coach of the Year (1955 and 1965), Daugherty was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1984.
"Clarence `Biggie' Munn and Hugh Duffy Daugherty are truly Michigan State coaching icons and certainly deserving of having their names added to the Spartan Stadium `Ring of Fame,'" Hollis said. "Both men played significant roles in helping shape the future of Michigan State football and quite frankly the college game itself.
"`Biggie' first brought the program to national prominence in the late 1940s and early '50s, and his teams helped position Michigan State for admission into the Big Ten. Duffy followed up by taking the program to new heights in the 1950s and '60s. More importantly, both men played critical roles in advancing the integration of college football. Under `Biggie' in 1952, Willie Thrower became the first black quarterback to play in the Big Ten. A year later, Thrower became the first African-American to play the position (Chicago Bears) in the National Football League. In the 1960s, Duffy continued to aggressively recruit in the South and became one of the first college football coaches to field a fully integrated team.
"`Biggie' and Duffy made deep, lasting contributions to this institution and its football program," Hollis continued. "It's also important that we recognize them for the lead roles they assumed in helping to break down the color barrier in college football. So we're definitely looking forward to paying tribute to these two College Football Hall of Fame coaches, and it's only fitting that their names be added to the `Ring of Fame' prior to this season's Homecoming game."
"Coach (Mark) Dantonio encourages his players to become familiar with the history and tradition of Michigan State football," junior running back Le'Veon Bell said. "He continually reminds us to have an appreciation for those that came before us and whose efforts provided us with the opportunities we're afforded today.
"We all respect and admire the accomplishments of `Biggie' Munn and Duffy Daugherty. Their coaching records and multiple National Championships speak volumes, but we're also thankful for their extraordinary efforts to bring integration to college football. We'll share in the excitement of their former players when the names of `Biggie' Munn and Duffy Daugherty are added to the `Ring of Fame' on Homecoming weekend. We look forward to celebrating their legacy."