Marine Corps Sports Hall of Fame

Robert Bruce Mathias
Robert Bruce Mathias
Class of 2002
Decathlon - Olympics

1948 and 1952

Robert Bruce Mathias. . .Mathias was a four-time national champion in triathlon. . .Was a star player as a fullback on the Stanford football team. . .Played in the 1952 Rose Bowl. . .Youngest person ever to win the Olympic decathlon Gold Medal at the age of 17. . .He repeated that feat in 1952 setting the world Record. . .Spent eight years as a congress men and six years as the director of the USOC. . .Born November 17, 1930, in Tulare, CA...

Robert Bruce Mathias

Robert Bruce Mathias was born November 17, 1930, in Tulare, California. He attended Stanford University on an NROTC scholarship from 1950 to 1954. After graduation Mathias joined the Marine Corps and served on active duty from 1954 to 1956. While on active duty he was assigned to Headquarters Battalion, 1st Marine Division at Camp Pendleton, California until his discharge as a 1stLt in September 1956. He then remained in the Marine Corps reserves and was promoted to the rank of Captain.

An excellent all round athlete, Mathias excelled in track and field. Robert Bruce Mathias In addition to being undefeated in the decathlon, Mathias was a four-time national champion in the decathlon. He was also a star fullback at Stanford University playing in the 1952 Rose Bowl. At the age of 17 he became the youngest ever winner of an Olympic track and field event by wining the gold medal in the decathlon in 1948. Two years later he set the first of three world decathlon records. Mathias set another world record in 1952 and once again won the Olympic title.

Robert Bruce MathiasMathias was drawn towards politics and elected to the 91st Congress in 1966. During his eight years as a Member of Congress, he served as a member of the Agriculture Committee and the House Foreign Affairs Committee.

After his political career he became the director of the United States Olympic Training Center from 1977 to 1983 and today he is president of Bob Mathias, Inc., and is a public relations consultant.