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2001 MBCA Hall of Fame Inductees

Apr 11, 2001 9:49:00 AM

Bill Blanton started his coaching career at Tarkio College as Assistant Men's Basketball Coach and Assistant Baseball Coach in 1972. He then had his head coaching debut atOsborn High School in 1973; he coached there for three seasons, winning as both boys and girls coach. He then sent five years as a head basketball coach at Louisiana, MO. Bill spent one year at South Iron County and a year at Jefferson City Public. He went to Fulton High School for six years, where for the next 26 seasons, he accrued an average of over 20 wins per season; he took Fulton to its first Final Four, in 1987. He then moved on to Jefferson City Helias for the next eleven seasons; his record there was 215 & 90. He lead Helias to two Final Four seasons in 1993 and 1994. Blanton moved on to Russellville for the next four seasons where his teams went undefeated in conference play  during the 2002 and 2003 seasons and made a trip to the Elite 8. His next five years were spent at Laquey High School in South Central Missouri. While at Laquey, many school records were set including two district championships, three consecutive undefeated conference seasons (24-0), two district titles and another trip to the Final Four in 2009. Blanton has led four teams to the Final Four, accrued 13 District Titles, numerous District Coach of the Year Awards, and boasts a career record of 735-342. He is currently ranked 7th in all time wins in Missouri Basketball history.


Gary Blevins has been an institution in the Branson and Forsyth areas where he has coached a number of high school basketball teams for many years.  His accumulation of 500 career victories places him in an elite class among his peers.   Blevins ended up coaching at Branson High School by way of Hollister, Seymour, Forsyth, and Mountain Grove High School.  His overall win/loss record is 503-323.   During his career, Blevins has been named Conference Coach of the Year, Tri-Lakes Coach of the Year, and had the honor of coaching for the Lions All-Star Basketball Classic in 1991.  Gary's teams have won 13 district championship games, four state play off appearances, and two final four appearances, taking third and fourth place honors.   One of his final four teams was honored with the Sportsmanship Award.


Bob Farrington The recently retired Cole Camp coaching veteran has coached boy's basketball for 35 years.  He began his career in Russellville where he coached one year of junior high, and one year of High School.  From there, Bob began coaching at Cole Camp where he also took on the role of Athletic Director.  Coach Farrington remained at Cole Camp for the next 33 years until his retirement in 1999.   During his tenure at Cole Camp, Coach Farrington accumulated 620 victories, 17 conference championships, 18 conference tournament victories, 2 district titles, and a final four appearance in 1994.

Larry Holley began his coaching career at Harrisburg(MO) High School in 1968.  From there he moved to Central Methodist College (1969-1975), Northwest Missouri State University (1975-1979), and finally to William Jewell College where he has just completed his 21st. season.  He has received 12 Coach of the Year awards, including the Sears/NABC Award as the NAIA National Coach of the Year in 1996.  At Jewell, he has guided teams to the post season 15 times with seven trips to the NAIA National Tournament.  Holley's 21 year record at Jewell is 473-219.  This ranks his basketball program #1 in all time victories for NAIA II with 1,295.  He is the career leader in wins among Heart of America Athletic Conference basketball coaches and is ranked #3 among all NAIA II coaches with 560 wins in 29 years.


Dennis Humphrey has been the Varsity Girls basketball coach at Salisbury High School for the past 22 seasons.  During this time, Humphrey has accrued a 441-151 career record winning 75% of his games and maintaining a 20-7 win/loss average throughout the duration of his service.  His teams own eight conference championships, six district titles, and a state quarter-finalist finish.  Humphrey has coached teams to the state tournament on a number of occasions and was the runner up in 1982.  In the 1988-89 season, Humphrey led his team to the 2A State Championship with a record of 32-0.


Lennies McFerren coached at Charleston for 17 years where he acquired a 418-98 record.  McFerren guided teams to 9 state championships including sis 86-87, 88-89, and 89-90 Charleston teams who won consecutive 3A State Championships with the 89-90 team going 33-0.  He won two more titles at New Madrid County Central (2000, 2001) and has come out of retirement twice – at New Madrid Central in 2005 and Kennett High School in November 2016. Overall, he has a 547-184 record in 24 seasons.  He has won a number of Missouri Coach of the Year awards throughout his career and he has accumulated 500 wins and was the Missouri State Nominee for National Coach of the Year for both the 1995-96 and 1992-93 seasons.


Jim Peters coached for 10 years ending with a career record of 257-56.   That translates into a .82 winning percentage.  Jim began his coaching career in 1951 at Halfway where he finished with a 23-10 record.  From there, Jim moved to West Plains where he coached for the next nine years.   During his tenure at West Plains, he went to five consecutive state tournaments (1955-60), where his best finish was 3rd in 1960.  Between the years of 1957-61, Peters maintained a five year 72 game winning streak at home, and between the years of 1959-61 he won 52 out of 53 games.  Jim coached seven players to all state honors and thirteen of his players went on to college careers.


Robert Taylor has accumulated a 619-284 record during his 33 year coaching career which included coaching stints at Conway, Marshfield, and St. Agnes.   Coach Taylor led his 1942-43 Conway team to a 2nd place finish and his 194-45 team finished 42-3 on their way to a State Championship.  In 1958-59 his St. Agnes team won the Class M State Championship with a 30-1 record.  Coach Taylor began and ended his career at Conway High School, beginning in 1939 and  ending in 1972.


James Thomas has been coaching for 28 years.  He began coaching at Slater High School in 1972 where he left behind a 147-51 record, five district titles, three state quarterfinal finishes and a second place finish in Class 2A.  While at Slater, James coached Joe Kleine who is currently completing his 15th season in the NBA.   From there, he moved to Lexington in 1982 where he was able to coach at his alma mater.  Thomas inherited an unsuccessful team in Lexington but had little trouble turning the program around.  In a seven year period beginning in 1989, his teams won four District Titles, two Conference Championships, and made it to the 2A State Quarterfinals.


Herb Webster began coaching in 1967 at Jamesport where he coached both boys and girls teams.  In 1974, Herb began coaching in Hamilton where over a 5 year period he led the girls team to a 119-10 record.  He also led his team to win 1st. in State in 1976, 3rd. in State in 1977, and 4th in State in 1978.  From Hamilton, Webster moved to Kearney, where he has coached for over 20 years now.  Here he has led his teams to a second place finish at the State Tournament in 1985.  Over his career, Coach Webster has four top five state finishes, 23 straight winning seasons, 11 conference titles, 8 district titles, and fourteen 20 game winning seasons.  His overall record is 722-403