Hall of Fame - Inductee Detail

Tom Hamilton

Tom Hamilton

Details

  • Position: Halfback
  • School: Navy
  • High School: Columbus, OH (Indianola HS) Granville, OH (Doane Academy)
  • Years: 1924-1926
  • Inducted: 1965
  • Place of Birth: Hoopeston, IL
  • Date of Birth: Dec 26, 1905
  • Place of Death: Chula Vista, CA
  • Date of Death: Apr 03, 1994
  • Jersey Number: 33
  • Height: 6-1
  • Weight: 180

Member Biography

Rear Admiral Thomas J. Hamilton is best identified as a man who "served his country in war and peace." The National Football Foundation named him to its Hall of Fame as a player in 1965 and awarded him its Gold Medal in 1970. Hamilton attended the U.S. Naval Academy. He was class president and All-America halfback. In 1926 he led the nation in field goals by drop-kick, with six. Navy went 9-0-1 with a national championship. In a 21-21 tie with Army, Hamilton led the charge to Navy's last touchdown and drop kicked the last point with 30 seconds to play. He graduated from the Academy in 1927 and won his wings as a Navy pilot at Pensacola in 1929. He founded the Navy V-5 Pre-flight Training Program in World War II. He served on the U.S.S. Enterprise and was commanding officer some of the time. The Enterprise, an aircraft carrier, took part in the invasion of the Philippines, Palau, Hollandia, Formosa and Iwo Jima. Hamilton's other credentials were equally brilliant. He became Naval Academy head coach at age 28 and served twice, 1934-36 and 1946-47. He was also Navy's athletic director 1948-49. Hamilton moved to the University of Pittsburgh, where he was athletic director 1949-59 and also served as football coach a full season in 1951 and for three games in 1954. He was commissioner of the Pac-8 Conference 1959- 71. Hamilton served as chairman of the President's Council on Physical Fitness, had 16 years on the U.S Olympic Committee, and was vice-president of the National Football Foundation. He received the Theodore Roosevelt Award from the NCAA, the Stagg Award from the National Association of College Directors of Athletics. Hamilton was born December 26, 1905, In Hoopeston, Illinois; he died April 3, 1994, in Chula Vista, California