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Willie Steele

Full name: William Samuel "Willie" Steele
Gender: Male
Height: 5-10.5 (180 cm)
Weight: 161 lbs (73 kg)
Born: July 14, 1923 in Seeley, California, United States
Died: September 19, 1989 in Oakland, California, United States
Affiliations: San Diego State Aztecs, San Diego (USA)
Country: USA United States
Sport: Athletics

Medals: 1 Gold (1 Total)

Biography

In 1942 the 18-year-old Willie Steele won the AAU Junior long jump and had a best mark of 25-7 (7.80), which topped the world rankings that year. He then missed what might have been his best years because of service with the Army in Italy and the Philippines and, after a three-year absence, he returned to serious competition and won the 1946 AAU title. The following year he again won the AAU and at the NCAA meet, representing San Jose State, he came close to Jesse Owens’s world record with a jump of 26-6 (8.08). In 1948 he won his second NCAA title and, after skipping the AAU championships, he won the Final Trials at 26-2 (7.97) to become the first man in history – apart from Jesse Owens – to break the 26-foot barrier twice. At the 1948 Olympics, Steele was suffering from a variety of injuries. He won the gold medal with his first jump and after limping through a second trial, which still exceeded the best effort of the silver medalist, he retired from the competition. Had his career not been interrupted by war service and injury problems he would almost certainly have succeeded Owens as world record holder. He later played pro football briefly but injuries continued to plague him, and his career with the LA Rams was undistinguished.

Personal Bests: 100y – 9.7 (1948); LJ – 26-6 (8.08) (1947); TJ – 47-5 (14.45) (1942).

Results

Games Age City Sport Event Team NOC Rank Medal
1948 Summer 25 London Athletics Men's Long Jump United States USA 1 Gold OR

Men's Long Jump

Games Age City Sport Country Phase Unit Rank D
1948 Summer 25 London Athletics United States Final Round 1 OR 7.825
1948 Summer 25 London Athletics United States Final Round Round One NP OR 7.825
1948 Summer 25 London Athletics United States Final Round Round Two NP 7.680
1948 Summer 25 London Athletics United States Final Round Round Three NP pass
1948 Summer 25 London Athletics United States Final Round Round Four NP pass
1948 Summer 25 London Athletics United States Final Round Round Five NP pass
1948 Summer 25 London Athletics United States Final Round Round Six NP pass
1948 Summer 25 London Athletics United States Qualifying Round 1 QU 7,780
1948 Summer 25 London Athletics United States Qualifying Round Group B 1 7.780
1948 Summer 25 London Athletics United States Qualifying Round Group B Round One 1 7.780
1948 Summer 25 London Athletics United States Qualifying Round Group B Round Two 1 pass
1948 Summer 25 London Athletics United States Qualifying Round Group B Round Three NP pass
id: 79,092