Towson Announces Inaugural Doc Minnegan Day

April 12, 2012 | WNST Staff

INAUGURAL DOC MINNEGAN DAY TO BE CELEBRATED ON SEPTEMBER 4

All-Campus Event To Celebrate Memory of “Doc” Minnegan, Teamwork, Sportsmanship
TOWSON, Md. – As a tribute to Dr. Donald “Doc” Minnegan, the long-time teacher, coach, physical education department chairman and Director of Athletics at Towson University, Tuesday, September 4 has been designated as the first “Doc Minnegan Day,” it has been announced by Director of Athletics Mike Waddell. 

“Over my first 18 months at Towson, I have heard a lot about the contributions of Doc Minnegan to the Towson University community, but also to the Baltimore sports scene and American Sport as a whole,” said Waddell. “There are many ways that we pay tribute to Doc at Towson – Minnegan Field at Johnny Unitas® Stadium, the Minnegan Room in the Field House, and even our mascot “DOC” gets his name from our first AD.  

“But looking at it from the eyes of our student-athletes and many of the coaches, there was not a clear understanding of who Doc was or what he had done during his career to make a difference.  I have talked with many of Alumni who played for and knew Doc, and I got the idea to create a day celebrating his memory every year through a series of leadership development events with our teams, coaches and staff.  The event will culminate with a cookout for our student-athletes and then we will invite the campus community to join us to hear a keynote speaker who will embody Doc’s mantra of ‘I Can Do It.’”  

A native of DeKalb, Illinois, Dr. Donald “Doc” Minnegan was an influential part of the Towson community for 50 years. “Doc” earned his teaching degree from Illinois State College in 1923 and his Bachelor’s degree from Springfield College in 1927. He arrived at Towson in 1927 when the school was known as “Maryland State Normal School.” He began his career as a part-time physical education teacher for the men on campus and soon established a number of teams beginning with soccer in 1929 when he became a full-time faculty member. In addition, he began the baseball, gymnastics, track, wrestling, football and lacrosse teams.
He retired in 1977 after 50 years at Towson.

“The more I learned about ‘Doc,’ it was obvious that he was a team builder from Day 1,” added Waddell. “In searching for a speaker, we wanted to find someone who could give voice to this theme, but also make it relevant in a myriad of ways to what Towson is all about today. One man immediately came to mind – Coach Herman Boone, the inspiration for the movie, ‘Remember The Titans.’

“The movie chronicled his story about the way he brought the T.C. Williams High School football team together and led them to become a family first, then CHAMPIONS,” added Waddell. “That is what Doc Minnegan was all about and it is what we are striving for with our #OneTOWSON theme and the way that Athletics relates back to the campus community.”

Coach Herman Boone faced a very difficult situation in 1971 when racial tensions were running high at T.C. Williams High School in Alexandria, Va. Three schools had merged to form a newly-integrated one. Out of this experience, the story of “Remember The Titans” emerged and an undefeated football team was born. T.C. Williams won the state championship that season. While there have been many more Virginia state championship football teams, that 1971 team, coached by Boone, will always be special.

Through hard work and inspiring his coaching staff and players, Coach Boone led his team to the state championship that season. Today, Boone is retired but continues to motivate and inspire audiences with his presentations on respect, teamwork and community involvement.

Coach Boone will speak on the night of September 4.  The exact time and location will be announced in the coming months, along with a series of leadership development activities which will be held on campus throughout the day.  

All events are open to the Towson University campus community, free of charge, on a first come first served basis.

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