John W. Anderson
John W. Anderson
Hometown: West Palm Beach, FL
Team: Special

John W. Anderson
West Palm Beach, FL
Year Inducted:

Before John Anderson took over as head football coach in 1973, the Bruins had posted eight consecutive losing seasons; in fact they had won only one of their last eighteen games. Within four years, Anderson had racked up four winning seasons en route to the Ivy League co-championship in 1976. His record of winning seasons remained unbroken for a total of eight years. Of Brown coaches in the “modern era” since 1950, he posted the best winning percentage. Anderson’s career record at Brown was 60-39-3 (47-28-2 in the Ivy League), and he was named A.P. and U.P.I Coach of the Year for New England in 1976, and Words Unlimited Coach of the Year in 1975 and 1976. Anderson brought winning football back to College Hill with a combination of imaginative two-way football, good recruiting, and a carefully-picked staff of good assistants. Nearly as important were his “can-do” attitude, a spirit that seemed contagious as Brunonians quickly came to view their football program as one of the strongest in the league. Anderson’s success at Brown was an extension of an acclaimed four-year stint at Middlebury College, where he worked his magic on a team that had won only eleven games in five years. Anderson’s Panthers improved steadily until Middlebury finished with an 8-0 season in 1972; his overall record there was 21-11. “College football should be a meaningful experience for the people who play the game,” Anderson said in 1982. “I’m proud to be a part of the Ivy League, and I’m especially proud to be associated with Brown. The academic-athletic philosophy we have makes coaching a constant challenge – but a most rewarding experience.” Anderson’s last three seasons were not winning ones, but until he resigned at the end of the 1983 season, he remained completely in that “challenging and rewarding” enterprise of coaching the Bruins. His was an era that Brown football fans are not likely to forget, nor will they forget the man who gave the entire Brown family something to cheer about again. John and his wife, Marge, reside in West Palm Beach where John is the Director of the New England Technical Institute.