100 days of Kansas City-area Olympians: Terry Porter, pole vault

Terry Porter Olympics pole vault.jpg
Posted at 8:00 AM, Jul 12, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-12 09:00:23-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Terry Porter was a two-time Texas 3A state pole vault champion at Azle High School, a two-time national champion at Ranger (Texas) Junior College and later won an NCAA title at the University of Kansas.

He went on to qualify for the 1976 Montreal Olympics, a first for anyone from Azle, and tied for 13th after making the pole vault final.

With the Jayhawks, Porter swept the Big Eight pole vault titles both seasons and won the NCAA indoor championships as a junior in 1973. He finished sixth in 1974 and also finished third and sixth at the NCAA outdoor championships.

Porter also won a silver medal at the World Universiade in 1973 and took part in the U.S. track team tour of China in 1975.

He also finished third, second, second and fourth at the AAU national meet from 1973-76.

Porter tied for second at the 1976 U.S. Olympic Trials to earn a berth in the 1976 Olympics and kept pole vaulting in Masters events into his 50s.

Porter was inducted in the Azle High School Hall of Fame in 2016.

The Kansas City region has a deep, rich history with respect to the Olympic Games. As the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games approach with the Opening Ceremony scheduled for July 23, we will profile an athlete with ties to Kansas City, Missouri or Kansas each day.

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