was a professional baseball player for four
years, was a 190 average bowler in leagues
in Springfield and Kansas City and played
slow pitch for 25 years in Centralia.
But “Auld Neip” is the best
remembered as sports editor of the Centralia
Sentinel for 22 years. After leaving
his post at the Sentinel, he became color
man for Orphan sports on WILY radio for
Niepoetter was the
Co-Founder of the Centralia Sports Hall of
without him, very little of Centralia sports
history would be preserved.
Bill spent untold hours tracking down all
aspects of Centralia sports, history, and statistics, and
made them known throughout the state and
probably saw more high school athletes
perform than anyone in Southern Illinois.
He watched nearly 200 basketball
games a season, 100 baseball games,
countless track meets and three football
games a week.
He covered St. Louis football
Cardinal home games for nearly 15 years,
meeting many great personalities and
bringing the name of Centralia to national
“Auld Neip” officiated for many
years including St. Louis University games
at Kiel Auditorium.
He umpired State American Legion
baseball tournies and Junior College State
torunies, and the Ten-state Babe Ruth League
He had feature articles in every
major newspaper in the state and St. Louis
area telling of the achievements of the
Centralia sports program.
He is the one who compiled the
statistics to allow Centralia to be
recognized as the "winningest"
high school basketball team in the nation.
In 1980, he was inducted into the I.B.C.A.
Hall of Fame (Media).
In 2006, he was inducted into the Clinton
County League Baseball Hall of Fame. He
served the league as an umpire for 15
In 2008, Niepoetter was inducted into the
Kaskaskia College Athletic Hall of Fame.