miller ralph
Ralph Miller
  • 3 sport star at Chanute High School
  • Played football and basketball at KU
  • Was inducted into the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame in 1988
Miller, Ralph
Inducted 1975

Born: March 9, 1919 – Chanute, Kansas

Died: May 15, 2001 – Black Butte, Oregon

Graduated: Chanute (KS) H.S., 1937; University of Kansas, 1942


After 38 years as a collegiate head basketball coach, Ralph miller retired in 1989 as the sixth – winningest coach in NCAA history. He accumulated a career mark of 674 wins – 370 losses, earned National coach of the year honors twice in 1981 and 1982, and took 10 teams to the NCAA tourney and five to the NIT.

Playing Career

Before establishing himself as a coaching legend, Miller experienced considerable success as an athlete, first at Chanute High School and later at Kansas University. At Chanute, where he earned 11 letters, “Cappy” was captain, all-state and all-conference three years in basketball, all-conference football three years and held the state low-hurdle record in track. At KU, under “Phog” Allen, he led the basketball team in scoring two years.  He was also KU’s starting quarterback three years. After graduating from KU in 1942, Miller served three years in the Air Force.

Coaching Highlights

Miller began his coaching career in 1948 at Wichita East High School where he won 63 of 80 games and a state title in three seasons there. He began his college career at Wichita State University where he compiled a 220-133 record in 14 seasons. From WSU, Miller went to the University of Iowa where he recorded a 95-51 mark in six years. He spent his final 19 seasons at Oregon State, winning 359 games and losing 186. Coach Miller had 35 winning seasons, won conference titles and coach-of-the-year honors in all three conferences in which he coached, and was named the 1988 Man-of-the-Year by the NIT.


Miller was inducted into the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame in 1988.