1978 Hall of Fame Inductee
Chick Atkinson came to BYU to coach football at a time when there were no grants-in-aid, no stadium, and very few capable football players. For seven years, from 1949 to 1955, he strove to build the Cougars into a unified, spirited team, emphasizing sportsmanship and hard effort on the playing field.
Chick was a talented athlete himself. While in high school in Pocatello, he was named to the All-State teams in both football and basketball. At Idaho State College, then a two-year school, he was involved in football, basketball, and track. And at the University of Idaho he was named to the Pacific Coast All-Conference team in baseball, captained the baseball and basketball teams, and was president of the letterman’s club.
Beginning his coaching career at the high school level, Chick led Emmett High and Blackfoot High to the state championships in 1941 and 1942. His 1947 and 1948 Pocatello High teams tied for the class-A championships.
During his years as BYU coach, he earned the respect and admiration of team members and colleagues. He retired in 1955 to accept a position in private industry, and died in 1962.