Inducted: 2017

The first football division President of the AOA, Walter served in that post in 1917. A superior athlete, Eckersall led Hyde Park High School to an undefeated season and to the unofficial national high school football championship in 1903. He went to play collegiate football at the University of Chicago, guiding the Maroons to the 1905 National Championship. Along with being one of the founding fathers of the AOA, he was an outstanding official, working as referee for the 1916 Rose Bowl and for the legendary 1927 game between Notre Dame and Southern Cal, played in Soldier Field before an estimated 120,000 spectators. Walter became a sportswriter for the Chicago Tribune and established the Tribune Athletic Association, recognizing sports officials in the Chicagoland area. Eckersall Stadium on Chicago’s south side is named in his honor and is still in use today