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Betty Hoff

Class of 1992 

Luther College (Iowa): 1969 - 2001

Hoff Question and Answer (Written 2009)



Betty Hoff, a 1992 NFCA Hall of Fame inductee, coached 33 years at Luther College in Decorah, Iowa, before retiring from coaching in 2001 with a 520-349 overall record. She also was a certified athletic trainer and teacher, with a career that spanned 43 years. 

Hoff, a Wisconsin native, graduated from Luther in 1960, and started work in the physical education department in 1961 after receiving her master's degree from MacMurray College the same year. When Luther added softball as a sport in 1969, Hoff was the logical choice for coach.

Among her many accomplishments, Hoff is known throughout the Midwest as a pioneer for women's athletics. Long before Title IX required intercollegiate athletics for women, Hoff encouraged Luther to start women's tennis, basketball, field hockey in 1965-66 and softball 1969. Funds were low, and in 1970, Hoff even paid for the women's volleyball, basketball and softball uniforms out of her own pocket.

Under Hoff's direction, Luther's teams won four Iowa Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Championships as well as four IAIAW state softball championships (1972, 1974, 1978 and 1981). Luther was selected to postseason eight times while Hoff was coach, including a fourth place finish in 1985 and 1990.

Hoff created the athletic training department at Luther in 1982 and served as the program director to gain department accreditation. She received her NATA certification from Arizona State from 1977-79, and also has a Ph.D. to her credit (University of Oregon in 1970). She was department head for the physical education department from 1964 to 1977, and served as associate director of athletics at the school from 1970 to 1990. 

One of the highlights of Hoff's career was the Pan American Games when the women's handball team qualified for the Seoul Olympics. Hoff was their trainer at the time and she still remembers that day as one of the most exciting in her career. 

Besides her induction into the NFCA Hall of Fame, Hoff is also a member of the Iowa Athletic Trainers' Society Hall of Honor, inducted in 2007. She was named a Nena Amundson Distinguished Professor at Luther from 2001 to 2004.