Meriwether, Bruce


The 1955 Drift said “Bruce has become one of the Tornadoes best.  His rebounding and shooting ability has made him a player to keep your eyes on next year”.   Bruce Meriwether lived up to the prognostication and more.

Bruce Meriwether is a 1956 graduate of Taylorville High School who lettered in Football, Basketball, Baseball and Track.  He also likes to point out that he also earn a letter playing the baritone in the concert band!

 A two year starting guard for the Tornado basketball team, Meriwether led the team in scoring with 804 career points.  A natural leader, Bruce was team co-captain his senior season.  That season is probably remembered as one of the most unique and most exciting basketball seasons in the annals of Tornadoes basketball.  Even with Meriwether as the only returning starter, anticipation was high for a successful season.   The season began with losses to Jacksonville. Kincaid and Edwardsville and as the regular season ended, Taylorville had only 13 wins against 17 losses.  However, coach Bob Lyons suddenly found the right formula and Taylorville won the regional and followed that up by beating Brownstown and Clinton in the Sectional becoming only the sixth Taylorville Basketball team to reach the IHSA “Sweet Sixteen”.  A loss to Rantoul 79-74 ended what could only be described as a tru “Cinderella Season”.   

Meriwether was named Special Mention All-State in both his junior and senior seasons.

 He was also a leader as quarterback on the football team, earning All-Southern Illinois Honorable Mention his senior season.


Following graduation Bruce Meriwether received a scholarship to play basketball at the University of Dubuque in Dubuque, Iowa. During his career at the University of Dubuque, Meriwether was leading scorer and selected as team captain three years.  A business major, Bruce remained in Dubuque after graduating and became not only successful in the banking industry, but was considered a successful and influential community leader.  With his Alma Mater in need, he was asked and he became acting President of Dubuque University from 1996 thru 1998.  A testament to his leadership and the feelings that The University of Dubuque has for Bruce Meriwether  lies  in a tree he planted during his tenure as president, now lighted annually during advent and is affectionately named “Bruce the Spruce”.  It is my pleasure to welcome to the Taylorville High School Sports Hal of Fame, Mr. Bruce Meriwether