I was fortunate enough to have Prof. Stanley B. Greenfield as my Introduction to Literature teacher that first year at Oregon. An internationally renowned scholar, he had graduate students from around the world clamoring to work with him.
Yet Greenfield, too, taught the beginners.
I carried Bowerman and Greenfield into every class and every practice of my 41 years in education.
And Dr. Edwin Coleman, as I explain in My Story #32.
Meanwhile, here's a story about Bowerman teaching me about pace, one I've never published or told before.
A new story about Bill Bowerman and me.
At the end of a spring '72 practice, I waited for the track to clear so I could attempt a solo time trial for two miles. I had run a variety of times in the narrow range of 11:00-11:08 and was intent on breaking 11:00 before the spring was over.
In cross country we had discussed pacing in a general way, but as I had run only one race (fairly well-paced for the rugged conditions in Bend, OR - I was always a mudder) I felt ready to tackle the 11:00 barrier.
I missed again and sat on a bench at the tunnel where Bowerman had posted our workouts the previous fall.
He came over and put his hand on my shoulder.
"What were you trying to do today?"
"What's the pace per lap for running 11:00?"
"Then why did you run the first lap in 68 seconds?!" he asked, incredulously. "You ran your first lap faster than the first lap of the steeplechase at the Pac-8 Championships at Stanford last weekend!"
Somewhere I had gotten it in my noggin that by going out fast you'd bank seconds and hold them in reserve for the end of the race.
I didn't usually go out quite so fast; I was inspired that day by watching athletes who had just qualified for NCAAs. Talk of the Olympic team was in the air.
Two weeks later I gave it another try. Bowerman couldn't have been more delighted to learn that I ran 10:48.
"It's not your fitness," he might have said. "It's how you use it."