Blueboys set to dedicate Merris Court
Illinois College will honor a longtime coach and campus administrator Saturday when it dedicates its basketball playing surface as Bill Merris Court.
Merris coached the Blueboys basketball team for 38 years ending in 1996, and also served as athletics director until his retirement in 2001. He also assisted with the football team and coached men's tennis for more than 20 years, in addition to serving as faculty marshal and chair of the physical education department during his more than 50 years of service to the college.
He remains affiliated with the school, from which he graduated in 1956, by supervising student teachers for the education department. Merris played football, basketball and baseball as a student at the college, then coached his basketball teams to 330 victories and three league titles.
"I can think of no greater honor for Bill Merris than to have the basketball court at Sherman Gymnasium named in his honor," said President Axel D. Steuer. "Bill has performed countless service on behalf of his college, and it is indeed fitting that his name becomes part of the principal campus venue for men's and women's basketball."
The dedication is planned as part of Senior Day activities between Illinois College's men's and women's basketball games against Grinnell Saturday afternoon.
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