E. E. 'Rip' Miller, longtime leader of athletics at Naval Academy, dies

E. E. "Rip" Miller, the last surviving member of the famed Seven Mules of Notre Dame and a leader in Naval Academy athletics for nearly five decades, died early yesterday at Ginger Cove in Annapolis where he had lived for the past five years. He was 90.

Services will be held at 11 a.m. Friday at the Naval Academy Chapel.


Mr. Miller, a native of Canton, Ohio, joined the academy as an assistant football coach, became head football coach and then assistant director of athletics for 26 years.

He retired from the Naval Academy Athletic Association on July 1, 1974.


He was the first of the University of Notre Dame's famed Seven Mules to be elected to the National Football Foundation Hall of Fame, that coming in 1966.

He was a tackle on the Seven Mules who teamed with the legendary Four Horsemen under coach Knute Rockne to give Notre Dame a national championship in 1924. The team earned a 27-2-1 record during his three years of varsity play.

A favorite banquet speaker, Mr. Miller would often relate how that team had a vote on "who was more important, the Four Horsemen or the Seven Mules. Naturally, we always won, 7-4."

Mr. Miller was graduated in 1925 with a bachelor of arts degree in foreign commerce and was awarded the Byron Kanaley Award given annually to the top student-athlete at Notre Dame.

Soon after graduation, he became an assistant football coach under the late "Navy Bill" Ingram at Indiana University after having been recommended for the position by Rockne.

After the 1925 season, Mr. Ingram and Mr. Miller both moved to the Naval Academy, Mr. Ingram as head coach and Mr. Miller as an assistant. And in that first season, they guided the Midshipmen to the mythical national championship.

Mr. Miller was named to succeed Mr. Ingram as head coach in 1931. He directed the Midshipmen for three seasons, producing a record of 12-15-2, but he had the distinction of being the first Navy coach to beat Notre Dame.

In 1948, Mr. Miller became assistant director of athletics with specific responsibility for athletic recruiting.


He was an honorary member of the Naval Academy Class of 1966 and the Naval Academy Alumni Association.

In 1966, the Naval Academy Foundation's Preparatory School Program established an honor scholarship in his name.

Mr. Miller is survived by his wife, the former Esther "Es" Templin of Elkhart, Ind.; a son, Thomas Miler of Cockeysville; two daughters, Pat Seaney of Ithaca, N.Y., and Joan Dove of Annapolis; eight grandchildren; and one great-grandchild.

The family suggests memorial contributions to the American Parkinson's Disease Association, 3800 Reservoir Road N.W., Georgetown University Hospital, Washington, D.C. 20007.