Thursday, June 5, 2014

Lions’ Freeman, Jayhawks Hoag, Wesley in Hall Class of 2014


Former Lawrence High football and track coach Bill Freeman and Kansas University standouts Charlie Hoag and Walt Wesley will be inducted into Kansas Sports Hall of Fame on Oct. 5 at the Wichita Boathouse.

Others in the Class of 2014 are Roger Barta (Smith Center High School football coach), DeLoss Dodds (University of Texas athletic director), Caroline Bruce McAndrew (Stanford All-American swimmer), Ed Nealy (Kansas State basketball), Gene Stephenson (Wichita State baseball coach), Bill Tidwell (Emporia State University track) and Chuckie Williams (Kansas State University basketball).

Hoag will be honored posthumously.

A four-year letterman as a player at Emporia State from 1949 to 1953, Freeman posted a career football coaching record of 242-81-3, including eight state championships in three different classes.

Most known for his coaching success at Lawrence High School, where Freeman coached five state championship football teams and two state track championships, Freeman also won football state championships at Osawatomie and LeRoy and coached at Baxter Springs, Parker Rural, and Nickerson.

One of the best athletes on KU’s 1952 basketball team, Hoag was a four-sport star who won an Olympic gold medal in basketball and was drafted professionally in football.

A two-time All-Big 7 football player for the Jayhawks, Hoag scored nine points in the 1952 NCAA hoops title game. Hoag was named, along with six of his Jayhawk teammates, to the 1952 U.S. Olympic basketball team which won the gold in Helsinki, Finland. Hoag was drafted to play halfback by the Cleveland Browns in 1953.

Wesley, who is a native of Fort Myers, Florida, was a two-time All-America selection at KU. Wesley led the Jayhawks in scoring in both his junior and senior seasons and averaged over 20 points per game both years. Wesley was named an All-Big 8 selection in 1965 and 1966 and was also selected as a Helms Foundation first-team All-American both seasons.

Wesley’s career scoring average at KU of 19.1 points per game ranks in the top ten of school history.

He was selected in the first round of the 1966 NBA Draft by the Cincinnati Royals and played 10 NBA seasons, registering over 5,000 points and over 3,000 rebounds.


Omari Miller 6 years, 5 months ago

I had the great honor of being on Coach Freeman's track team right before he retired. He was a terrific coach and mentor. Congratulations, Coach!

Steve Corder 6 years, 5 months ago

Walt Wesley, one of my all-time favorites!

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