Coach Eagen helped start winning Cyclone tradition

Former HCHS head football coach Terry Eagen, who directed program’s first state title in 1972, dies at age 81

    MASON CITY -- Former Harlan Community football coach Terry D. Eagen, 81, of Mason City, died on Tuesday, December 29, 2020, at the Cornerstone Assisted Living facility.
    A private service was held Tuesday, January 5, at First United Methodist Church in Mason City.
    Eagen guided the Harlan Community football team to its first-ever state title in the fall of 1972, capped by a 14-12 victory over Cedar Rapids Regis at Kinnick Stadium in Iowa City. It was also the first year that state football playoffs were held in Iowa.
    Eagen was the Cyclones’ head coach for seven years (1967-1973), during which time the team went 56-9-1, including back-to-back undefeated seasons in 1971 and 1972. His teams also won six conference titles.
    Eagen left Harlan to coach Marshalltown in 1974 and guided the Bobcats to playoff appearances in 1977 and 1980. Prior to Harlan, he started the football program at South Hamilton.
    A member of the Iowa Football Coaches Association Hall of Fame, Eagen’s career coaching record in 19 seasons was 119-62-2.
    Legendary HCHS football coach Curt Bladt, who joined Eagen’s staff in 1968 and became the head coach 10 years later - beginning a path of 11 more state titles, eight runner-up teams and 422 wins during the next 42 years - called Eagen a good coach, mentor and friend.
    “We were both from Exira, which is kind of interesting,” Bladt noted.
    “(Terry) was definitely about going into every game thinking about winning the ball game no matter what the circumstances were. You played to win and you played by the rules, and if you didn’t you were in trouble. He had great ethic in the game and just did things right.
    “It was a fun time. We had a good time.”
    Terry’s full obituary can be viewed at www.majorericksonfuneralhome.com.

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