Donald Bren excelled in football and baseball during his days at Denison. As a defensive back for the Big Red grid squad, Bren earned the Mike Gregory Award for outstanding defensive play throughout the 1951 season.
He was also named to the third-team Little All-American team. In addition to his defensive honors, Bren holds the DU record for the longest punt returned for a touchdown (84 yards vs. Wittenberg, 1951). During his senior season at Denison, Bren was a standout pitcher on the Big Red varsity baseball squad. Bren was also a member of the Kappa Sigma fraternity as an undergraduate in Granville.
After graduation Bren went on to coach football at LaGrange High School in Ohio before becoming the end for the Fort Jackson Golden Arrows, a U.S. Army football squad, in 1953. In 1954 and ’55, Bren was the football backfield coach and a basketball assistant for Pennsylvania Military College. Penn Military football squad went undefeated during the ’54 season.