Coach Spoo Inducted Into Hall of Fame

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Published on July 19 2012 5:51 pm
Last Updated on July 19 2012 5:51 pm
Written by Millie Lange

Former Eastern Illinois head football coach Bob Spoo has been elected into the Ohio Valley Conference Hall of Fame. He will be officially inducted at the annual OVC Honors Brunch which will be held Friday, June 1 at the DoubleTree Hotel in downtown Nashville.

The Ohio Valley Conference Hall of Fame was organized in 1977 with the intent of honoring the coaches, administrators, faculty and staff who have been associated with the OVC for at least five years and provided extensive and outstanding service to the Conference. With the induction of this year’s class the membership will reach 70.

Spoo wrapped up 25 years (1987-2011) as head football coach at Eastern Illinois this past season, finishing his career with 144 career victories, nine Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) Playoff appearances (the fifth-most in FCS/I-AA history), five OVC Championships (2001, 2002, 2005, 2006, 2009) and three OVC Coach of the Year awards (2001, 2005, 2009).

After EIU joined the OVC in 1996, Spoo recorded 92 total victories (fifth-most in league history) and 68 total OVC wins (fourth-most in league history).

In 2000 Spoo was the national runner-up for the Eddie Robinson National Coach of the Year and in 2009 he was named a finalist for the Liberty Mutual Coach of the Year award. He was awarded the Football Gazette I-AA Coach of the Year award in 1995.

Overall Spoo was a coach for 50 years, making stops at several high schools, Wisconsin and Purdue before coming to Eastern Illinois. At EIU he coached seven players named either OVC Offensive or Defensive Player of the Year, including quarterback Tony Romo who won the Walter Payton Award as the FCS’s National Player of the Year in 2002.

Spoo played collegiate football at Purdue, earning three letters and following NFL Hall of Famer Len Dawson at quarterback in 1957; he led the Boilermakers to a two-year record of 11-5 and co-captained the 1958 Blue team in the Blue-Gray All-Star Game.

Spoo and his wife Susan have one daughter, Kate.