Made the University of Oregon a premier destination for aspiring pro runners. He touched off the jogging craze in the United States and co-founded Nike.
He worked as a journalist and a sometime high-school track coach before he was hired by his alma mater to coach track.
He had two daughters and three sons with his wife Barbara Young Bowerman.
He was played by Donald Sutherland in the 1998 movie Without Limits, which centered on his relationship with his most famous trainee, Steve Prefonatine.