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Dick Peters

  • 3-time letterman in football and track at K-State
  • Had a remarkable coaching record of 68-6 over an 8 year period from 1960-1967 at Ottawa
  • Inducted into the NAIA Football HOF in 1973
Peters, Richard "Dick"
Inducted 1977

Born: April 7, 1920 – Valley Falls, Kansas

Died: May 26, 1973 – Manhattan, KS

Graduated: Valley Falls (KS) H.S., 1938; Kansas State University, 1946; MS – University of Kansas, 1957

Overview

One of the most respected small college football coaches in the United States, Dick Peters won over 75 percent of his games during his 19 years as the head football coach at Ottawa University. He guided the Braves to three undefeated seasons, eight conference championships and six second-place finishes. Peters’ lifetime coaching record of 129-42-3 included undefeated teams in 1960, 1961, and 1965. He had undefeated strings of 23 games and 19 games and he coached seven NAIA All-Americans.

Playing & Early Coaching Career

Peters was a three-year letterman in football and track at Kansas State University after a standout high school career at Valley Falls, Kansas. He served as the assistant to Wally Forsberg at Ottawa from 1946 to 1948 before being named head coach in 1949. Peters spent four years at Ottawa, compiling a 26-10 record with two KCAC titles and two second place finishes before becoming an assistant coach at Southern Methodist University from 1953-57.

Coaching Highlights

Peters returned to Ottawa in 1958 where he was the Braves’ head coach until 1971. During his second tenure at Ottawa, the Braves were 103-32-3 with six more conference titles. In the eight-year period from 1960-1967, Ottawa was 68-6.  Peters served as President of the NAIA Football Coaches Association from 1964 to ’66.  He left Ottawa in 1972 to become an assistant to Vince Gibson at Kansas State University. He died of a heart attack in 1973 at age 53.

Honors

Peters was inducted into the NAIA Football Hall of Fame in 1973.