Wally Johansen

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Wally Johansen
No. 32
Personal information
Born August 26, 1917
Astoria, Oregon
Died September 8, 1971(1971-09-08) (aged 54)
Coos Bay, Oregon
Nationality American
Listed height 5 ft 11 in (1.80 m)
Career information
High school Astoria (Astoria, Oregon)
College Oregon (1936–1939)
Career highlights and awards

Wallace A. "Wally" Johansen (August 26, 1917 – September 8, 1971) was a college basketball guard who played for the University of Oregon when it won the inaugural NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Tournament championship in 1938–39.

Early life[edit]

Born in Astoria, Oregon, Johansen played basketball at Astoria High School, graduating in 1935 after helping the Fishermen win two consecutive state championships.[1] That same year, his high school coach, John Warren, was hired as the freshman basketball coach at the University of Oregon, and he recruited Johansen and teammate Bobby Anet to enroll at Oregon.[2]


At Oregon, Johansen played three seasons for the Ducks varsity, forming a reliable backcourt with Anet, his teammate since junior high school.[3] In his senior season of 1939, the Ducks won the Northern Division of the Pacific Coast Conference, and then defeated Southern Division champion California to win the conference championship and advance to the inaugural 1939 NCAA basketball championship, where they faced Ohio State in the final game.[4] As Ohio State focused on stopping Oregon's frontcourt players, known as the "Tall Firs," Johansen and Anet ran the fast break and took control of the game.[5] Johansen scored 9 points to help lead Oregon to a convincing 46–33 victory.[6] Johansen had his jersey (#32) retired, and was later inducted into the Oregon Sports Hall of Fame as well as the University of Oregon Sports Hall of Fame.[3]

After basketball[edit]

After he graduated from Oregon, Johansen enrolled at the University of Oregon School of Law. His law school studies were interrupted by his service in World War II, but following the war, he earned his law degree from Oregon in 1948.[7] He became an associate in the Coos Bay, Oregon law firm McKeown & Newhouse, eventually becoming a partner in the firm.[7] From 1967 to 1968, Johansen served as President of the Oregon State Bar.[3][8] He died of a heart attack in 1971.[9]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Tall Firs' captain dies in Portland". Eugene Register-Guard. July 25, 1981. pp. B1–B2. Retrieved July 30, 2010. 
  2. ^ Wadsworth, Lois (March 4, 2004). "Hometown History: local sports champions". Eugene Weekly. Retrieved July 7, 2010. 
  3. ^ a b c "Wally Johansen". GoDucks.com. University of Oregon. March 8, 2006. Retrieved July 7, 2010. 
  4. ^ "University of Oregon 2006–2007 Men's Basketball Media Guide". University of Oregon Department of Athletics. p. 141. 
  5. ^ Gergen, Joe. "The beginning: Oregon is king – 1939". Sporting News. Retrieved July 7, 2010. 
  6. ^ "Tourney History: 1939 Championship Game". CBS Sports. Retrieved July 7, 2010. 
  7. ^ a b "Firm history". Whitty, Littlefield, McDaniel, Bodkin. Retrieved July 7, 2010. 
  8. ^ "Oregon State Bar Presidents". Oregon State Bar. Retrieved July 7, 2010. 
  9. ^ "Basketball". Oakland Tribune. September 10, 1971.