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

Jim Luce - Inducted 2011

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Always one of the smaller players in the game, Luce was always one of the best as well.

The Sioux Falls Washington High grad quarterbacked Augustana to the 1959 North Central Conference title – the Vikings’ only football title in a span of nearly 70 years. The 5-foot-11, 160-pound junior was all-NCC that year for Coach Bob Burns. As a senior he was the No. 2 passer in the NCAA college division (105-for-168 for 1,253 yards) and set college-division records for completion percentage in a season and game (22-for-25 vs. North Dakota). The three-year starter set virtually every Augustana passing mark.

He also played baseball (two years) and basketball (one year) at Augustana. As a sophomore, he scored 25 points against SDSU in basketball and hit a team-leading .415 in baseball.

Luce quarterbacked Washington to a 23-2-1 record in three years as a starter (he was 142 pounds as a sophomore) and was twice named to the all-state team. He was  an All-American as a senior. As a starting guard in basketball, he helped the Warriors to the 1956 state title and a runner-up finish in 1957 (he was second-team all-state as a senior). He also was a standout pitcher and hitter in baseball and a fine golfer.

Luce coached and taught at Washington High for more than 30 years. He coached football, basketball and golf. He was 37-31 in eight seasons as football coach (1980-87). As the boys golf coach from 1965-80 and 1991-99 and the girls golf coach from 1968-99, Luce guided the Warriors to six boys state titles and four girls state titles. He retired in 1999.

As a golfer, he qualified for the U.S. Public Links tourney in 1983, was the runner-up in the state senior stroke-play tourney in 2000 and was a runner-up in the state two-man tourney in ’03 and ’04.

He is a member of the Washington High, Augustana and South Dakota High School Coaches Association halls of fame. He was named the 1997 national golf coach of the year by the National High School Athletic Coaches Association. He and John Simko were named college co-athletes of the year by the South Dakota Sportswriters Association in 1960.


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