Wilson High School, University of Puget Sound, Mason Junior High School
Sam Ring has had a tremendous impact on the sport of track and field in Pierce County! Born in Tacoma in 1948, Sam grew up to become the league two-mile champion at Mt. Tahoma High School. That success was only the beginning! He attended Central Washington University where he was a member of eight league and regional championship teams in both cross country and track and field. While at CWU, he set three school records, qualified for seven national meets, and earned NAIA All-American honors in 1968 and 1969. In 1968, Sam competed at the Olympic Trials in the 3000 meter steeplechase. Following his graduation, Sam became the first winner of the Sound to Narrows race in 1973. While his individual success as an athlete is one marked by great success, it was his return to his hometown of Tacoma that proved to be the most important! It began in 1970 when he became the coach at Mason Junior High School. From 1970 to 1972, he helped start the boys and girls cross country programs, and guided the boys track team to the league championship in 1972. The boys he mentored on that 1972 championship team went on to score 40 points at the 1975 AAA state track & field meet earning at team title. He moved on to a coaching position at the University of Puget Sound in 1973 where he coached cross country and was an assistant track coach. From 1976 to 1980, Coach Ring served as the head cross country coach at Bellarmine Prep achieving great success. In the Spring, from 1975 to 1981, he served as an assistant coach at Wilson High School where he played an instrumental role in helping head coach Jim Daulley guide the Wilson teams to three league titles and seven top four team places, including state titles in 1975, 1978, 1980 and 1981. In 1981, he served as Wilson High School’s head girls cross country coach, adding the boys head coaching position in 1985. But, it was in 1982, when he became the head boys track coach at Wilson High School guiding that team to what many people consider to be one of the greatest teams in the history of high school track & field in Washington State! He served as the head coach at Wilson until 1986 when he returned to the University of Puget Sound. During his time at Puget Sound, he mentored 31 cross country All-Americans and 36 track All-Americans, guiding four individuals to national titles. In 2001, Coach Ring returned to Wilson High School to serve as the boys head coach in both track and field and cross country. It is with great honor that we welcome Sam Ring into the Washington State Track and Field Coaches Hall of Fame. His tireless commitment to the sport, his important mentorship of his athletes, his collaborative work with all his coaching colleagues, his important contributions, and his service to the WSTFCA, provide us with the opportunity to recognize him with this honor!