2017 OBCA Hall Of Fame Induction Ceremony


Induction Ceremony: Saturday, June 3, in Ada 

Five new members will be inducted into the Oklahoma Basketball Coaches Association Hall of Fame on Saturday in Ada.

Tim Bart of Bartlesville, director of the hall of fame, announced the Class of 2017. Jack Begley, Cecil Hankins, Ron Murphey, Robert Sprague and Bailey Van Zant will be honored during a luncheon at 11 a.m. Saturday in the Chickasaw Business & Conference Center Foundation Hall on the campus of East Central University. Begley, Hankins and Murphey will be enshrined posthumously.

Begley, who died in 2004, coached at Texhoma and Clinton high schools from 1958 through 1966. Following a year coaching in Texas, he returned to Oklahoma as head coach of Panhandle State for eight seasons.

In four seasons at Clinton, Begley won back-to-back state championships (1964, 1965) with the help of All-Staters Melvin and Carlos Bell.

Upon leaving the coaching ranks, Begley entered Oklahoma politics. He was elected and re-elected to seven consecutive terms in the Legislature. For 10 years, he served as chairman of the Appropriations and Budget Subcommittee on Education.

Hankins, who died in 2002, coached basketball, football, track, baseball and golf in Sand Springs for 16 years, ultimately retiring as director of athletics in 1988. He was inducted into the Oklahoma Coaches Association Hall of Fame in 1975.

His athletic career bordered on legend. At Oklahoma A&M, he played football under Jim Lookabaugh and basketball under Henry Iba.

He was a speedy halfback and defensive back on the undefeated 1945 team that recently was declared national champion. He also averaged 13 points for the Iba team that won the national basketball championship in 1945.

Hankins had opportunities to play professional basketball and football. He chose basketball for two seasons, one year with the Boston Celtics.

At Sand Springs, he coached baseball star Jerry Adair and officiated basketball and football at the collegiate level.

Murphey, who died in 2016, spent 29 years coaching high school basketball at Felt and Texhoma. 

At Texhoma from 1980 through 2000, Murphey won a state championship (1994) and had a runner-up team (1988) and coached in the 1996 All-State and Faith 7 games.

He had two stints at Felt in Cimarron County. He started his career there in 1971, before moving to Texhoma. He worked as superintendent at Plainview (2001-11) and came out of retirement in 2014-15 to earn his 400th victory at Felt.

Sprague spent 42 years in education, all in Tulsa, retiring in 2014.

At Webster, Hale and Memorial, he was either head coach (22 years) or assistant coach (13 years). At Webster, he served under Hall of Fame coach Bill Allen. At Hale, he worked under another Hall of Fame coach, Woody West. At Memorial, he also served as director of athletics from 1997 through his retirement in 2014.

He was inducted into the Tulsa Public Schools Athletics Hall of Fame in 2015.

Van Zant was a head coach for 23 years during his 37-year tenure in education.

He coached at Pond Creek (1949-54) and Pryor (1954-69) before accepting the challenge of starting the basketball program at Seminole Junior College.

After three seasons at Seminole (1969-72), he moved to Texas where he coached another 14 years at the high school and junior college levels.

He has been inducted into the Northwestern State University Hall of Fame (2002), where he played basketball and baseball, and the Oklahoma Coaches Association Hall of Fame (1968). He coached in the 1958 All-State game and in the 1958 and 1960 All-American high school basketball games.

Tickets for the 16th OBCA Hall of Fame luncheon are $15. A reception is scheduled for 10:30 a.m.





One Response to “2017 OBCA Hall Of Fame Induction Ceremony”

  1. Cecilia Hankins Coggeshall Says:

    On behalf of my father, I would like to thank the OBCA for honoring him with this award. He was a very talented athlete and a great coach. He helped mold young athletes into great people. He was respected as a coach, teacher, father and a person. I so wish he and my mother were here to receive this award and honor. My family and I are so very proud of him! Thank you again.

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