Coughlan, Eugene (‘Eudie’) (1900–87), hurler, was born 26 August 1900 at Blackrock, Co. Cork, second son of Patrick Coughlan, fisherman, and Nora Coughlan (née Dorney). He was educated locally at Blackrock before leaving school aged 14 to work as a fisherman. From a strong hurling background (his father Patrick and uncles Dan, Denis, Ger, and Tom Coughlan all played for the famous Blackrock hurling club and won a total of nine All-Ireland medals for Cork between 1892 and 1903, while his maternal uncles Michael and William Dorney also played for the county), he broke into the Blackrock team in the 1919 season and went on to win seven Cork county championships with the club in 1920, 1924, 1925, 1927, and as captain in three in a row (1929–31). An extremely loyal club man, he often claimed this as his proudest achievement. His association with the county side began in 1919 when he was a non-playing substitute on the Cork side that beat Dublin in the All-Ireland final, and was right-half forward on the side that lost the 1920 final to the same opponents.
A naturally gifted hurler, particularly adept at striking the sliotar first time in the air and on the ground, he was also strong and fiercely competitive. Although not an especially prolific scorer, he created many chances for his fellow forwards through clever passing and became famous for his knack of taking crucial scores in important games. He and his Blackrock club mates Sean Óg Murphy (qv) and Patrick (qv) and Michael Ahern (qv) formed the spine of the dominant Cork sides of the late 1920s and early 1930s. Their first major success came in 1926 in the inaugural national league final, played at the Cork Athletic grounds, with Coughlan scoring three long-range points in the second half to ensure victory. Later that year he won his second All-Ireland medal when Cork defeated Kilkenny 4–6 to 2–0, adding three more to his collection in 1928, 1929, and 1931 and a second national league medal in 1930. He also played in five Railway cup finals for Munster, winning three times in 1928, 1929, and 1931, and represented Ireland in the Tailteann games in 1928.
His finest season came in 1931 when he was selected to captain Cork and led them to All-Ireland victory after two replays against Kilkenny in the final. With Cork a point down with seconds to play in the first match, he was knocked to the ground while in possession but managed to score the equalising point from his knees to ensure a replay. In the second draw he scored 1–2 from play, in what was described as the finest captain's display ever seen in Croke Park, before Cork finally triumphed in the second replay. In the following year he controversially retired from inter-county hurling in protest at the Cork county board's decision to remove the selection of the Cork side from his club, although he continued to play hurling and won his last trophy aged 63 as goalkeeper for the Cork harbour commissioners in an inter-firms competition. Widely acknowledged as one of the finest hurlers ever to play the game, he was awarded an All-time All-star in 1985.
He married (3 February 1926) Margaret Conway of Cobh, and they lived at Ropewalk, Blackrock. They had no children. He worked for the Ford motor company in Cork for many years before taking a position with the Cork harbour commissioners, where he remained until his retirement. He died 4 January 1987 after a short illness and was buried in Douglas cemetery, Cork. His older brother, John ‘Ballyhea’ Coughlan (1898–1965), was also a prominent hurler for Cork and Blackrock. He played in goal for both sides, winning seven county championships with Blackrock and two All-Ireland titles with his county in 1926 and 1931. He was also goalkeeper on the victorious national league sides of 1926 and 1930.