Inducted September 25, 1976
The first three year’s of Ben Koeneman’s SMS football career came between 1951 and 1953 when he played center for Coaches Fred Thomsen and Bill Dellastatious and he was a member of the 1951 team which tied Kirksville for the league title. The Mt. Vernon native spent two years in the service and returned to the Bruins in 1956 when Aldo Sebben was in his first campaign as the Bears’ head coach. Koeneman was again the SMS center and, after the Bears struggled through a slow start, Koeneman became the team’s placekicker and brought the club to life. He beat Rolla with a 22-yard kick that brought home a 10-7 win over Maryville. He finished the season with a total of six field goals and was the only SMS player that year to gain selection to the all-league first team.