He was a student at Newtown High School in Connecticut, after spending a year in high school in Sleepy Hollow, NY where he earned a scholarship in football. He enrolled in Graceland University but a knee injury forced him to stop playing. That was when he decided to switch to the decathlon. He debuted in a decathlon in 1970 where he placed sixth.
He then entered the decathlon at the 1972 U.S. Olympic trials where he placed third, and finished in tenth place at the 1972 Olympic Games in Munich. These triumphs prompted him to commit full-time to a grueling regimen. During that period, he spent 8 hours a day at the track at San Jose College. His presence there was part of what made San Jose a hotbed for elite athletes to train.
He became a gold medalist by winning the 1976 Summer Olympics decathlon, where he set a world record by scoring 8,634 points. In 1976, he was considered the best athlete in America and he was named Athlete of the Year. He was inducted into the Olympic Hall of Fame in 1986 as well as the Bay Area Sports Hall of Fame, The Sports Hall of Fame in 1994 and the U.S. National Track and Field Hall of Fame in 1980.
Jenner has recently returned to the spotlight after marrying Kris Kardashian and starring in the reality TV show Keeping Up With the Kardashians.