Bill O'Neill retired in the summer of 2008 after nearly 40 years on the Missouri State staff. He worked for 16 seasons as an assistant football coach on the staffs of head coaches Don Cross and Rich Johanningmeier. A native of Chicago and graduate of and former football player at Illinois State University, O'Neill was the Bears' offensive line coach for six seasons, coached the defensive line 10 years and was defensive coordinator his last six seasons as the Bears won their final MIAA title in 1978 and made the transition to NCAA I-AA status in 1982. 19 of O'Neill's charges earned all-conference recognition and four went on to professional football playing careers. O'Neill added the duties of an assistant director of athletics in 1976 and was promoted to associate director in 1991. In the administrative post, he had responsibilities for supervising sports, facilities, scheduling and working with a number of special events hosted by the University. O'Neill was honored in 2008 with the naming of the William J. O'Neill Endowed Athletic Scholarship and also the Bill O'Neill Golf Tournament in recogntion of his many years of service on behalf of Missouri State athletic lettermen alumni.