Jimmy Mills

A legendary Philadelphia coach, who built parallel careers in the college ranks and the American Soccer League, and established a remarkable record of longevity in coaching.

Mills, whose teams won six ASL championships in eight seasons, coached the Philadelphia Nationals of the ASL from that team’s founding in 1942 until its end in 1953. After a slow start, the Nationals became a powerhouse in the late 1940s with the emergence of Walter Bahr and Ben McLaughlin as stars and the addition of several former Baltimore Americans players to the lineup. They then won ASL championships in 1949, 1950, 1951 and 1953. Mills later added two more titles as coach of another Philadelphia team, Uhrik Truckers, in 1955 and 1956. He narrowly missed ASL titles with Philadelphia Nationals in 1952 and Brookhattan of New York in 1954. He won the Lewis Cup with Philadelphia Nationals in 1949 and 1951, and was runnerup in the U.S. Open Cup with Philadelphia Nationals in 1949 and 1952.

Mills, who emigrated to the United States from Scotland, via Canada, in 1922 when he was 28, spent the American portion of his playing career with Fairhill, a Philadelphia amateur club. He coached various college and secondary school teams in the Philadelphia area from the 1930s to the 1980s, for much of those years while coaching ASL teams at the same time. The largest part of this time, from 1949 to 1971, was spent as coach of Haverford College, where he won three Middle Atlantic Conference titles and had only two losing seasons. He took one year off from his Haverford job to coach the 1956 U.S. Olympic team, which made a long Asian tour as well as playing in the Olympic Games in Australia.

Inducted in 1954.