Barry Lewis: Former Jenks cross country, track coach John McGinnis honored
BY BARRY LEWIS World Sports Writer
Thursday, May 10, 2012
5/10/12 at 4:46 AM
Go to Barry Lewis' BlogOriginal Print Headline: Former Jenks coach honored
EVERY YEAR former Jenks cross country and track coach John McGinnis attends the Oklahoma Coaches Association's Hall of Fame banquet with his high school coach and fellow OCA Hall of Fame member, Richard Chapman.
This year will be an exception in order so McGinnis can receive high school coaching's highest honor.
McGinnis, who led Jenks to 13 boys and girls state cross country titles, will be in Fargo, N.D., during that week to be inducted into the National High School Athletic Coaches Association's Hall of Fame on July 24.
"He (Chapman) coached me at Memorial and taught me to coach," McGinnis said. "He's the kind of guy you would go through a wall for. We were talking the other day and I told him, 'Coach you're the one who made track so much fun. When I coached, I tried to make it fun for our kids."
McGinnis, who was the NHSACA's president in 1999-2000, had other coaching role models such as Glenn Chowins and Hugh Pierce, who was a student teacher for at Edison in the early '70s.
"You learn from all these guys and it all comes together," McGinnis said.
McGinnis, who was at Jenks from 1975-94, can smile now when he remembers some rough early days as the Trojans' coach.
"Our first big cross country meet was Edison's, held at Nimitz Middle School," McGinnis said. "We started with seven guys and ended with three - two hit a tree and two fell in a hole. There had been no cross country program previously so we started with no background. Our kids said they would do better and they did. We started doing the Monday and Wednesday runs at 5:30 (a.m.) on Riverside but by the end of the year, we beat Holland Hall. That was a big accomplishment for us, and we wound up going to the state as the last qualifier."
McGinnis, a Vietnam veteran, was hired at Jenks by athletic director Red Rogers with an assist from volleyball coach Nick Ditolla, who was McGinnis' college roommate. When they met, Rogers asked McGinnis to get a haircut. McGinnis got one and then a couple of trims during the next week to make sure Rogers knew he really wanted the job.
"It's so funny, once I became a coach I demanded my kids to have good hair and look neat because it carries over in life," McGinnis said.
McGinnis, who coached 86 all-state athletes, is thankful for his assistant coaches, including Martha O'Rourke, Parks and Allan Trimble.
"People forget because of his football success that he was a great track coach," McGinnis said about Trimble. "They all helped a lot.
"The Jenks community, administration, parents and booster club were just great for 19 years. We had fun and won a lot. A lot of our kids went on to do great things in college."
McGinnis, 65, who served as Memorial's principal from 2000-06, is retired from public education and lives in Tulsa. He recently had two knee replacement surgeries that he hopes will enable him to resume jogging for the first time in several years.
Also being inducted is Duncan football coach Jim Holloway, who has 248 career wins and led Wynnewood to three state titles.
OBCA honors Mims: Booker T. Washington assistant principal Mike Mims, who coached the Hornets to three state boys basketball titles, is among five new members of the Oklahoma Basketball Coaches Association Hall of Fame. Other 2012 inductees who were announced Monday are Mick Weiberg, Jack Ray, Roy Riley and Leon Dixon.
The 2012 class will be inducted at a banquet 7 p.m. June 8 in Oklahoma Baptist University's Geiger Center in Shawnee. Tickets are $14 and can be purchased by calling (405) 585-5311.
Bixby's Young commits: Bixby senior center Sean Young committed on Tuesday to play basketball at Louisiana Tech. Young, who is 6-foot-10, will be a preferred walk-on during the upcoming season and then be offered a scholarship.
"I got along with everybody there and liked the environment," said Young, who plans to study business and marketing.
Young was offered by Loyola-Chicago and also was recruited by Drake. He averaged 4.7 points and 4.9 rebounds as a senior. Young played the best basketball of his high school career during Bixby's late-season run to a Class 6A state tournament appearance.
Also on Tuesday, Booker T. Washington point guard Brandon Brantley signed to play basketball with Rogers State on Tuesday. Brantley, who is 5-11, averaged 5.9 points and 6 assists as a senior.
Scheulen commits: Catoosa tailback Cole Scheulen, who was 4A's leading rusher as a senior in 2011, has committed to play football at Missouri Southern. Scheulen rushed for 2,194 yards and had 34 touchdowns last season. He was a Tulsa World All-State selection.
State players nominated: Four Oklahoma players have been nominated for the 2013 U.S. Army All-American Bowl on Jan. 5 at San Antonio. Those nominees are East Central wideout Stanvon Taylor, Tahlequah Sequoyah quarterback Brayden Scott, Vian offensive lineman Rob Boyd and Lawton defensive lineman D.J. Ward.
Spring football: High schools are encouraged to send the dates of their spring football games or events to Barry Lewis at (918) 581-8393 or at email@example.com.
Notes: CHEF (Christian Home Educators Fellowship) had its first college signee in its 14-year history when Jeremiah Adams signed recently to play basketball with Oklahoma Wesyelan...
Former Bishop Kelley pitcher Laurent Zenoni had a team-high 13 saves and a 3.29 ERA for Drury's baseball team this season. He was the Great Lakes Valley Conference pitcher of the week in early April.