Hall of Fame Inductee - Bill Gross

The story behind Hall of Famer Bill Gross is one of great interest. An outstanding football player for his home town of Gibson City, Illinois, Gross earned all-state honors his senior year as a halfback and place kicker. He was good enough to earn a full athletic scholarship to the University of Illinois, but turned it down, choosing instead to stay home and work construction. While the money was good, the desire to play football was greater. So, Gross headed to Bloomington where he attended Illinois Wesleyan College. He was a star there starting at halfback/fullback and place kicker all four years leaving as Wesleyan's all-time leading kicker. After graduation Gross took a coaching job in Adrian, Michigan for two seasons before returning to his home town of Gibson City to assume the duties of head football and track coach. Over a two year span the Gibson City football team compiled records of 7-2 and 10-0 while recording 13 consecutive shutouts. With coaching success in his wake, Gross moved to Canada at the conclusion of the 1960 school year and signed on as the kicker for the London Ontario Lords. He later returned to the states and tried out with the then Los Angles Rams. At the ripe old age of 29 Gross and his family moved to Elgin, Illinois where he coached and taught at both Elgin Sr. High and Elgin Larkin. In 1964 Quincy named Gross as the new head football coach a position he would hold through 1976. His Blue Devils were a fearsome lot in the early 1970's, winning conference titles in 1971-73 and again in 1974. That same '74 team also advanced to the state play-offs. In 1979 Gross moved into the athletic director's seat where he remained until his retirement in 1988. Bill Gross was inducted into the Gibson City High Hall of Fame in 1990 as a charter member. Six months later (April 1991) Gross became part of the Illinois High School Football Coaches Hall of Fame. The coaching career of Bill Gross spanned 20 years his career as an educator an impressive 36 years. Bill Gross typifies what the Quincy High Sports Hall of Fame is all about.

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