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Oklahoma State Basketball

Naismith Hall of Fame Finally Gets It Right With Official Induction of Eddie Sutton

May 15, 2021
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STILLWATER – After far too many years of waiting, legendary Oklahoma State coach Eddie Sutton was finally inducted into the Naismith Hall of Fame Saturday evening.

His son, former Oklahoma State head coach and player, Sean Sutton, accepted the award on the behalf of the Eddie Sutton family.

“Today is a special day for the Sutton family, my brothers and I are honored to be here and share this moment with our family,” said Sean Sutton. “We’d hoped and prayed this day would come and our dad would finally get inducted into the coveted basketball hall of fame. We’re so grateful he was alive to get the call, grateful we were there to see the excitement on his face, but sad he’s not alive to give this speech. He would’ve done an amazing job.”

Three legends of the game were on hand as presenters to send Eddie into the hall, fellow hall of fame coaches Bill Self and John Calipari and former Arkansas point guard Sidney Moncrief. There was also a large Oklahoma State contingent which included current head coach Mike Boynton, soon-to-be athletic director Chad Weiberg, Larry Reece and several boosters and alumni.

Eddie makes the fifth Oklahoma State representative in the Naismith Hall of Fame as he joins Bob Kurland (1961), his coach and mentor, Mr. Henry Iba (1969), Don Haskins (1997) and Bill Self (2017).

Let’s start off with the fact there are only 10 coaches throughout the history of Division I college basketball to have at least 800 wins, with Eddie making the list with 806 wins. He was also the first coach to ever take four teams to the NCAA tournament, Arkansas, Creighton, Kentucky and Oklahoma State, as well as one of a just a few coaches to take teams from two different schools to the Final Four, Arkansas and Oklahoma State.

Eddie was a two-time AP College Coach of the Year, in 1978 and 1986, as well as the NABC Coach of the Year in 1986. He was also a four-time Southwest Conference Coach of the Year, 1975, ’77, ’79 and ’81, the SEC Coach of the Year in 1986, the Big Eight Coach of the Year in 1993 and the Big 12 Coach of the Year in 1998.

Sutton spent 11 very successful seasons at Arkansas where he amassed a 260-75 record, which included five Southwest Conference titles, nine appearances in the NCAA tournament and a trip to the Final Four in 1978.

After a brief stint at Kentucky, Sutton came back home to Stillwater where he ended a near 10-year NCAA tournament drought after just one season at the helm.

He’d lead the Pokes to the Final Four in the 1994-95 season, which many consider to be one of the best teams in program history, then back during the 2004-05 season, another one of the best teams in program history.

Discussion from...

Naismith Hall of Fame Finally Gets It Right With Official Induction of Eddie Sutton

693 Views | 8 Replies | Last: 27 days ago by Zach Lancaster
CanadianCowboy
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Finally. All of us in the O-State family will be forever grateful to the time, effort, and leadership of Eddie Sutton. We lived through the glory and the despair, but I think we will all be proud of Eddie Sutton's legacy. I hope there never comes a day that his signature comes off the white maple court that he played and coached on.
CaliforniaCowboy
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yeah... just add more signatures if somebody comes along and wins a championship and has a lot more wins.

I don't know about his signature, but I hope somebody comes along that does even more than Eddie accomplished... or perhaps a whole string of somebodies.

maybe we add more signatures, and also start naming arena seating sections after successful coaches. (Iba's section obviously is the one with his chair)

Zach Lancaster
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Staff
I think if we start to see a coach or coaches have as much or more success than Eddie we'll see sections, or possible the practice gym and things like that named after them. Boynton is certainly young enough to have plenty of success, so I'm hoping they're able to build upon last season in 2021.
CaliforniaCowboy
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shhh.... don't tell Zach that Cade left.... LOL

CanadianCowboy
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CanadianCowboy
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SiliconPrairie
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It is a bittersweet moment. It's wonderful that Eddie finally received the recognition he so richly deserved; yet it is also sad that his Kentucky-based detractors were able to obstruct the process until it was too late for Eddie to enjoy the celebration.

In my humble opinion, that subversion of the process by one politically powerful fanbase will be a perpetual stain on the integrity of the Hall of Fame. I will always love Eddie, but my respect for the Naismith Hall evaporated years ago.
Zach Lancaster
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