The South Dakota Sports Hall of Fame is dedicated to the preservation, documentation and display of South Dakota's sports history.

Clarence Schutte - Inducted 2012

The Hecla native gained fame  as  “the man who stopped Red Grange’’ for his football exploits at the University of Minnesota. Before Minnesota, he starred at Northern State and South Dakota State. After Minnesota, he became known as “Mr. Santa Barbara of Sports” after spending 40 years in the California city as a high school coach and athletic director.

Schutte rushed 32 times for 282 yards and scored all three Minnesota touchdowns in the Gophers’ 20-7 win over Illinois in 1924. The 5-foot-10, 168-pounder also was a major factor on a defense  that stopped Grange cold. The 282 yards was a school record that stood for more than 70 years. The victory is regarded as the greatest upset in Gophers history. Schutte earned all-Big Ten honors and was named to several All-America teams.

Schutte considered boxing and wrestling his two best sports. He earned money to get through school by wrestling, and he was the first school boxing champ at Minnesota.


His sports career began when he attended an academy that was part of Northern State’s operation. As a high schooler, starting in 1916, he participated in Northern’s athletic program, competing four years each in football and basketball.

From there he went to SDSU, where he competed two years each in football, basketball and track. In 1923, he won the 100-yard dash at the very first Dakota Relays  in 10.1 seconds. Later that spring at the North Central Conference meet, he was first in the shot put (a meet-record 39-11) and ran on the record-setting mile-relay team (3:33).

As a football coach at Santa Barbara High, he was 173-45-12 in 23 seasons. The Dons qualified for the postseason 18 times and won the Southern California championship three times. In addition, he coached golf (12 years), track (11 years), basketball (11 years) and baseball (eight years). Among the athletes he coached were baseball Hall of Famer Eddie Mathews and pro golfer Al Geiberger.

Schutte, who retired in 1965, also was highly regarded in the field of physical education. The California State Department of Education for years recommended that school officials and teachers visit and observe his physical education program in action.

Schutte is a member of the Northern State, SDSU, Howard Wood Dakota Relays and California Coaches halls of fame.

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