James Donald Owens (March 6, 1927 – June 6, 2009) was an American football player and coach. He was the head coach at the University of Washington from 1957 to 1974, compiling a record of 99–82–6 (.545) in eighteen seasons.
Owens from 1960 UW yearbook
|Born||March 6, 1927|
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
|Died||June 6, 2009 (aged 82)|
Bigfork, Montana 
|Coaching career (HC unless noted)|
|1954–1956||Texas A&M (assistant)|
|Administrative career (AD unless noted)|
|Head coaching record|
|Accomplishments and honors|
|1 National (1960) |
3 AAWU (1959, 1960, 1963)
|College Football Hall of Fame|
Inducted in 1982 (profile)
Owens played college football at the University of Oklahoma from 1946 to 1949, under head coach Bud Wilkinson, where he was a teammate of Darrell Royal, who, coincidentally, was the Huskies' head coach in 1956, then took the same post at Texas, allowing Owens to come to Seattle. He played a year of pro football in 1950 and then was a college assistant coach for six years under Bear Bryant at the University of Kentucky and at Texas A&M University. According to legend, after the 1956 season, when the Washington Huskies were looking for a head coach, Bryant indicated to reporters that Owens "will make a great coach for somebody some day."
In 1959 and 1960, he led Washington to back-to-back ten-win seasons and consecutive Rose Bowl wins, as well as a national championship in 1960. He also coached the Huskies to the 1964 Rose Bowl. Owens concurrently served as the athletic director at Washington from 1960 to 1969. He was elected to the College Football Hall of Fame as a player in 1982.
Owens resigned as head coach of the Huskies following the 1974 season at the end of his last contract, a three-year deal at $33,000 per year. His later years at Washington were marred by accusations of racism and the backlash that resulted from his actions and attitudes towards black players. He was succeeded as head coach by Don James, the head coach at Kent State, who also led the Huskies for eighteen seasons. Owens later apologized for his actions as part of his acknowledgements as a statue of him was erected at Washington in 2003.
Head coaching recordEdit
|Washington Huskies (PCC/AAWU/Pac-8) (1957–1974)|
|National championship Conference title Conference division title or championship game berth|
- "Jim Owens, former Washington football coach, dies at 82". New York Times. Associated Press. June 8, 2009. Retrieved June 23, 2017.
- "Former Washington football coach Jim Owens dies at 82". USA Today. Associated Press. June 6, 2009. Retrieved June 23, 2017.
- Withers, Bud (June 6, 2009). "Jim Owens, coaching legend of UW football, dies at 82". Seattle Times. Archived from the original on June 11, 2009.
- "Sarkisian has 'it' factor UW needs".[permanent dead link]
- "Huskies' Owens quits". Lewiston Morning Tribune. Lewiston, Idaho. Associated Press. November 27, 1974. p. B1. Retrieved June 23, 2017 – via Google News.
- Underwood, John (September 1, 1969). "Shave off that thing!". Sports Illustrated. p. 20.
- "UW blacks stay home". Spokane Daily Chronicle. (Washington). AP, UPI. October 31, 1969. p. 17.
- "Tension easing at UW". Spokane Daily Chronicle. (Washington). AP, UPI. November 12, 1969. p. 35.
- Gayton, Carver (September 19, 2004). "Carver Gayton reflects on the Jim Owens statue at Husky Stadium, University of Washington". HistoryLink. (essay 5745). Retrieved June 23, 2017.
- Wilma, David (November 27, 2001). "Huskies coach Jim Owens suspends four African American football players on October 30, 1969". HistoryLink. (essay 3645). Retrieved August 25, 2019.
- Condotta, Bob (October 26, 2003). "Owens repeats apology as statue is unveiled". The Seattle Times. Retrieved June 23, 2017.