John Longfellow

John Longfellow (1901-1977)

Teams coached: Indiana State Sycamores
Indiana State record^: 120-59 (.670)
Overall record^: 120-59 (.670)

Career Accomplishments:

  • NCAA Tournament Appearances:  0
  • NIT Appearances:  0
  • ICC (NAIA) Regular Season Champion: (1951)
  • IIC (NAIA) Regular Season Champion: (1949, 1950)
  • NAIA National Championships:  1  (1950)
  • NAIA Tournament Appearances:  5  (1949, 1950, 1952, 1953, 1954)

Coaching Career (head coach, unless noted):

1948-1954 Indiana State

John Longfellow Facts

  • John Landis Longfellow
  • Born September 20, 1901
  • Died November 8, 1977
  • Hometown: Warsaw, Indiana
  • Alma Mater: Manchester College (BA, 1922)
  • The Indiana-native spent over 20 years coaching at the HS level in his home state, most notably at Elkhart HS (1929-48)
    • At Elkhart, Longfellow’s teams won over 375 games and 24 state tournament titles
    • Also coached at Leesburg HS (1922-24), Nappannee HS (1924-28) and Hatford City HS (1928-29), all in Indiana
  • Became the head coach at Indiana State, then a NAIA program, in 1948 and led the Sycamores for six seasons
    • Compiled a 120-59 record overall, reaching five NAIA Tournaments and winning three conference titles (2x IIC, 1x ICC)
    • His 1948-49 team reached the Final Four and then the 1949-50 team won the NAIA National Championship
    • Indiana State represented the US in the 1951 Pan-American Games, during which Longfellow’s team won the gold medal
  • At the same time as he became head coach (1948), he also became the athletic director at Indiana State
    • Carried on in that role even after his coaching career, working as AD until his retirement in 1966
  • Inducted into the NAIA Hall of Fame (c/o 1960), Indiana Basketball Hall of Fame (c/o 1967) and the Indiana State University Hall of Fame (c/o 1984)
    • Additionally, the 1949-50 were inducted as a team into the NAIA Hall of Fame (c/o 2000)

John Longfellow Coaching Tree

  • Duane Klueh (Indiana State)


^ overall record includes head coaching positions at the NAIA level only; Indiana State did not move up to Division I play until 1971