For the baseball player, see Otis Davis (baseball)
Otis Davis in 2012
|Born||July 12, 1932|
|Height||1.85 m (6 ft 1 in)|
|Weight||74 kg (163 lb)|
|Sport||Track and field|
|Event(s)|| 400-meter dash |
4×400 m relay
|College team||University of Oregon|
|Club||Philadelphia Pioneer Club|
|Coached by||Bill Bowerman|
Otis Crandall Davis (born July 12, 1932) is a former American athlete, winner of two gold medals for record-breaking performances in both the 400 m and 4 × 400 m relay at the 1960 Summer Olympics. Davis set a new world record of 44.9 seconds in the 400 m event, and he became the first man to break the 45-second barrier.
These are the official results of the Men's 400 metres event at the 1960 Summer Olympics in Rome. The competition was held on September 3, 1960 and to on September 6, 1960. 59 competitors from 44 nations entered, but participated 54 competitors from 41 nations.
The men's 4 × 100 metres relay event at the 1960 Olympic Games took place between September 7 and September 8.
The 1960 Summer Olympics, officially known as the Games of the XVII Olympiad, was an international multi-sport event that was held from August 25 to September 11, 1960, in Rome, Italy. The city of Rome had previously been awarded the administration of the 1908 Summer Olympics, but following the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 1906, Rome had no choice but to decline and pass the honour to London.
Otis Crandall Daviswas born in Tuscaloosa, Alabama on July 12, 1932. He is black and Native American. He served four years in the United States Air Force, during the Korean War.
Tuscaloosa is a city in and the seat of Tuscaloosa County in west central Alabama. Located on the Black Warrior River at the Atlantic Seaboard fall line of the Piedmont, it is the fifth-largest city in Alabama, with an estimated population of 100,287 in 2017. The city was originally known as Tuskaloosa until the early 20th century.
The indigenous peoples of the Americas are the Pre-Columbian peoples of North, Central and South America and their descendants.
The United States Air Force (USAF) is the aerial and space warfare service branch of the United States Armed Forces. It is one of the five branches of the United States Armed Forces, and one of the seven American uniformed services. Initially formed as a part of the United States Army on 1 August 1907, the USAF was established as a separate branch of the U.S. Armed Forces on 18 September 1947 with the passing of the National Security Act of 1947. It is the youngest branch of the U.S. Armed Forces, and the fourth in order of precedence. The USAF is the largest and most technologically advanced air force in the world. The Air Force articulates its core missions as air and space superiority, global integrated intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance, rapid global mobility, global strike, and command and control.
Following the Air Force, Davis attended the University of Oregon on a basketball scholarship, hoping to one day becoming a professional. One day in 1958 while observing athletes running on the track with a friend, Davis, who had never run before, nor attended schools in his youth with sports programs other than basketball and football, decided that he could beat the athletes he saw on the track. He approached track coach Bill Bowerman, who would later become the founding father of the Nike, Inc., and asked to join the track team. Bowerman, who needed high jumpers, had Davis try his hand at that event. Among Davis' first attempts at the high jump, he jumped 6-0. Recalls Davis, "I had no form. I had no style. I just jumped." He also hit 23-0 in the long jump with little effort, though Davis was flustered by the sprinting events, relating "I didn't even know how to get in the starting blocks". In his first competitive event, Bowerman entered Davis in the 220-yard dash and the 440-yard dash in the Pacific Coast Conference championships, both of which Davis won, missing the school record by two tenths of a second in the latter event.
The University of Oregon is a public flagship research university in Eugene, Oregon. Founded in 1876, the institution's 295-acre campus is along the Willamette River. Since July 2014, UO has been governed by the Board of Trustees of the University of Oregon. The university has a Carnegie Classification of "highest research activity" and has 19 research centers and institutes. UO was admitted to the Association of American Universities in 1969.
William Jay "Bill" Bowerman was an American track and field coach and co-founder of Nike, Inc. Over his career, he trained 31 Olympic athletes, 51 All-Americans, 12 American record-holders, 22 NCAA champions and 16 sub-4 minute milers. During his 24 years as coach at the University of Oregon, the Ducks track and field team had a winning season every season but one, attained 4 NCAA titles, and finished in the top 10 in the nation 16 times. As co-founder of Nike, he invented some of their top brands, including the Cortez and Waffle Racer, and assisted in the company moving from being a distributor of other shoe brands to one creating their own shoes in house.
Nike, Inc. is an American multinational corporation that is engaged in the design, development, manufacturing, and worldwide marketing and sales of footwear, apparel, equipment, accessories, and services. The company is headquartered near Beaverton, Oregon, in the Portland metropolitan area. It is the world's largest supplier of athletic shoes and apparel and a major manufacturer of sports equipment, with revenue in excess of US$24.1 billion in its fiscal year 2012. As of 2012, it employed more than 44,000 people worldwide. In 2014 the brand alone was valued at $19 billion, making it the most valuable brand among sports businesses. As of 2017, the Nike brand is valued at $29.6 billion. Nike ranked No. 89 in the 2018 Fortune 500 list of the largest United States corporations by total revenue.
According to Davis, Bowerman made the first pair of Nike shoes for him, contradicting the claim that they were made for Phil Knight. Says Davis, "I told Tom Brokaw that I was the first. I don't care what all the billionaires say. Bill Bowerman made the first pair of shoes for me. People don't believe me. In fact, I didn't like the way they felt on my feet. There was no support and they were too tight. But I saw Bowerman make them from the waffle iron, and they were mine."
Philip Hampson "Phil" Knight, whose nickname is "Buck" is an American business magnate and philanthropist. A native of Oregon, he is the co-founder and current chairman emeritus of Nike, Inc., and previously served as chairman and CEO of the company. As of June 2019, Knight was ranked by Forbes as the 26th richest person in the world, with an estimated net worth of US$31.8 billion. He is also the owner of the stop motion film production company Laika.
A waffle iron or waffle maker is a utensil or appliance used to cook waffles. It usually consists of two hinged metal plates, molded to create the honeycomb pattern found on waffles. The iron is heated and either batter is poured or dough is placed between the plates, which are then closed to bake a breakfast delicacies with a sweet dessert flavor, very similar to pancakes but lighter and sweeter. The appearance is much harder to achieve than a pancake; hence the waffle iron.
In 1960, Davis was competing on a national level for the Oregon Ducks, and was poised to becoming a national AAU champion in the 440-yard run.
The Oregon Ducks are the athletic teams that represent the University of Oregon in Eugene, Oregon. The Ducks compete at the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division I level as a member of the Pac-12 Conference. With eighteen varsity teams, Oregon is best known for its American football team and track and field program, which has helped Eugene gain a reputation as "Track Town, USA". Oregon's main rivalries are with the Oregon State Beavers and the Washington Huskies.
The same year, at the age of 28, Davis made the U.S. Olympic team. He ran his fastest time to date one week before participating in the 1960 Summer Olympics in Rome as one of the oldest members of the track team, where he was nicknamed "Pops" by his teammates. According to Davis, "I was still learning how to turn with the staggered starts and all. I was still learning the strategy involved. I was still learning how to run in the lanes."
Davis competed against the heavily favored German athlete Carl Kaufmann, who was the world record holder in the 400-meter dash. Davis won by a hair over Kaufmann, setting a world record of 44.9 seconds and becoming the first man to break the heralded 45-second barrier. The photo of the finish, with (in full horizontal dive position) Kaufmann's nose ahead of Davis, but his torso behind, has been studied and discussed by track and field officials for years.Both athletes were awarded the world record time, recorded in the 10ths of a second in those days, but Davis was awarded the win. Two days later, Davis and Kaufmann met again for the 4 × 400 m relay final. He held off the challenge, anchoring home the gold with another world record performance of 3:02.2. The photo of the finish of that race was also made famous in Life magazine.
It was also at the 1960 games that Davis met and became friends with Muhammad Ali. Davis comments, "Boy, you think I talk a lot, but I couldn't get a word in with him. And since he's a boxer and I'm a runner, I couldn't really argue with that. We just kind of gelled."
Following the Olympics, Davis competed in some sporadic track meets, such as the 1961 U.S. Nationals at Randall's Island, where at age 29, Davis was victorious, but his competitive running career was virtually over, as he never repeated his Olympic performance. He returned to Oregon, where he obtained his degree,a B.S. Health & Physical Education, in 1960. He later considered playing as wide receiver for the Los Angeles Rams. After retiring from competition, Davis become a high school teacher, working in Springfield, Oregon for many years, and then traveled overseas to work as an athletic director at United States military bases, including McGuire Air Force Base in New Jersey, where he taught in 1989. He also taught various after-school programs for gifted students.
In 1991, Davis moved to Jersey City, New Jersey, in order to live closer to New York, eventually settling in Union Citysometime after December 2008. In 1996 he was a torch-bearer for the Summer Olympics in Atlanta.
Around 2002 or 2003,Davis was hired by the Union City Board of Education, and began working at Emerson High School as a truancy officer, teacher, coach and mentor. When he was inducted into the National Track and Field Hall of Fame in 2003, he asked Emerson Principal Robert Fazio to accompany him to the ceremony in Los Angeles, and when the rest of the school's staff discovered that Davis was an Olympic medalist, they honored him with a banner posted in a hallway in the school honoring his achievements.
In 2012, Davis was working as a verification officer at Union City High School, mentoring students,some of whom have gone on to win the United States Olympians Tri-States Chapter Annual Achievement Award, which is awarded to New York, New Jersey and Connecticut students. The top five winners in 2012 were Union City students. He is also co-founder and, in 2012, president of the Tri-States Olympic Alumni Association, a member of the University of Oregon Hall of Fame and the New Jersey Sports Writers' Halls of Fame.
Davis ran athletic skills programs during the spring and summer in Union City, in order to reach students who did not normally participate in sporting events, and to complement the schools' physical education curricula. Among the programs that Davis directed were the Mayor's Cup, first held on June 6, 2011, in which students from the city's several elementary schools compete in events that include sprinting, spring relays and circle relays,and the Sports Challenge, which provides special needs children with the opportunity to be a part of sports activities.
Frederick Carlton "Carl" Lewis is an American former track and field athlete who won nine Olympic gold medals, one Olympic silver medal, and 10 World Championships medals, including eight gold. His career spanned from 1979 to 1996, when he last won an Olympic event. He is one of only three Olympic athletes who won a gold medal in the same individual event in four consecutive Olympic Games.
Middle-distance running events are track races longer than sprints, up to 3000 metres. The standard middle distances are the 800 metres, 1500 metres and mile run, although the 3000 metres may also be classified as a middle-distance event. The 1500 m came about as a result of running 3 3⁄4 laps of a 400 m outdoor track or 7 1⁄2 laps of a 200 m indoor track, which were commonplace in continental Europe in the 20th century.
Track and field is a sport which includes athletic contests established on the skills of running, jumping, and throwing. The name is derived from where the sport takes place, a running track and a grass field for the throwing and some of the jumping events. Track and field is categorized under the umbrella sport of athletics, which also includes road running, cross country running, and race walking.
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Georges Yvan "Géo" André was a French track and field athlete and rugby union player. As an athlete he competed at the 1908, 1912, 1920 and 1924 Summer Olympics in various events, including long jump, high jump, 400 m sprint, 110 and 400 m hurdles, pentathlon and decathlon. He won a silver medal in the high jump in 1908 and a bronze in the 4 × 400 m relay in 1920, finishing fourth in the 400 m hurdles in 1920 and 1924 and fifth in the standing high jump in 1908. At the 1924 Olympics he took the Olympic Oath and served as the flag bearer for the French delegation.
Carl Kaufmann was a West German sprint runner.
William Louis "Colonel Bill" Hayward was a track and field coach at the University of Oregon for 44 years, and a track coach for six United States Olympic teams, from 1908 through 1932.
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The Kansas Relays are a three-day track meet every April, held at the University of Kansas in Lawrence, Kansas. Since 1923, the Kansas Relays have attracted runners, throwers, and jumpers from all over the United States of America, bringing in athletes ranging from Olympians to high-schoolers. Olympians such as Marion Jones and Maurice Greene compete in the Gold Zone portion of the meet, which attracts thousands of spectators every year. Competitors have also broken world records at the meet. The 2004 Olympic champion, Justin Gatlin, was a prominent athlete to fail a doping test at the Kansas Relays.
The Oregon Ducks track and field program is the intercollegiate track and field team for the University of Oregon located in the U.S. state of Oregon. The team competes at the NCAA Division I level and is a member of the Pac-12 Conference. The team participates in indoor and outdoor track and field as well as cross country. Known as the Ducks, Oregon's first track and field team was fielded in 1895. The team holds its home meets at Hayward Field in Eugene, Oregon. Robert Johnson is the current head coach and since the program's inception in 1895, there have only been seven permanent head coaches. The Ducks claim 31 NCAA National Championships among the three disciplines.
Phyllis Chanez Francis is an American track and field athlete, current World Champion in the 400 metres event.
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Sydney McLaughlin is an American hurdler and sprinter who competed for the University of Kentucky before turning professional. McLaughlin holds a number of age group world bests and won the Gatorade National Girls Athlete of the Year trophy for both 2015–16 and 2016-17. She placed third in the 400-meter hurdles at the 2016 United States Olympic Trials, qualifying for the 2016 Summer Olympics. McLaughlin has a personal best of 50.07 in the 400m.
Kahmari Montgomery is an American track and field sprinter specializing in the 400 m. He was the men's 400 m champion at the USA Championships in 2018, and at the NCAA Division I Championships in 2019. He represented the United States in the 4 × 400 m relay at the World U20 Championships in 2016 and at the inaugural Athletics World Cup in 2018, earning gold medals in both competitions.
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