Nickolaus' was a multi-talented athlete at
Centralia High School, winning special
recognition in football and basketball from
the Champaign News-Gazette and the Chicago
Daily News. However, his claim to fame
came in the area of track and field.
He was State high jump champion in 1949 (5’11 3/4”),
and second place in 1950 (5’10 1/2”) and
District high jump champion in 1948, 1949,
He received special mention All-State
recognition in both football and basketball
at Centralia High School. He led the
1949 football team in scoring with 68 points
as the team finished 5-3 on the
season. He was named first team
All-Tourney at the Centralia Holiday
Tournament in 1949 as the Orphans finished
second to Chicago Tilden. The 1949-50
basketball finished 21-7.
Nickolaus was also a member of A.L.
Trout’s only baseball team at CHS in
1947. The team played in the summer months and had
a record of 12-2 and tied for the South
Seven Conference title.
He went on to start in basketball and run
track at SIU Carbondale.