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Lambert, Piggy, 1888-1958



  • Existence: May 28, 1888 - January 20, 1958

Biographical Information

Ward L. "Piggy" Lambert was born in Deadwood, South Dakota, and grew up in Crawfordsville, Indiana. Lambert graduated from Wabash College in 1911 and completed post-graduate work in chemistry at the University of Minnesota. He taught chemistry and coached athletics at Lebanon High Schhool in Indiana until being hired by Purdue in 1916.

Lambert coached Purdue basketball and baseball from 1916 until his death in 1958, aside from service in the Army Field Artillery during World War I and 1946 to 1949 when he served as Commissioner of the National Professional Basketball League.

Under Lambert's leadership, Purdue's basketball team won 11 Big Ten titles. Lambert was widely respected as a ground-breaking coach and published widely on basketball coaching and techniques, including the book "Practical Basketball." Lambert was named outstanding basketball coach in the United States in 1945 and was named to the Basketball Coaches Hall of Fame.


"Piggy Lambert, Coaching Great, Dies," Purdue Exponent, 21 January 1958.

Found in 1 Collection or Record:

Collection on Piggy Lambert

 Collection — Box: Communal Collections 27, Placement: 07
Identifier: MSF 215
Scope and Contents Materials related to Coach Piggy Lambert include a letter to boosters seeking donations to celebrate Lambert's 25 year anniversary at Purdue; a news clipping listing Purdue basketball's record under Lambert; and an issue of "The First Aider" newsletter from 1936, containing the article "Preliminary Training for a Basketball Season" by Lambert.
Dates: 1936 - 1942