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Former Basketball Coach: Legendary Coach Beryl Shipley Elected To Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame

FOR SUNDAY RELEASE   December 29, 2013
Contact: Matt Sullivan (985) 981-0009; matt.sullivan@louisiana.edu


LEGENDARY COACH BERYL SHIPLEY ELECTED TO LOUISIANA SPORTS HALL OF FAME Winningest coach in Cajuns history to be enshrined on June 21


NATCHITOCHES   Legendary basketball coach Beryl Shipley, who guided the Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns to national prominence in the late 1960s and early 1970s, was one of eight individuals selected for enshrinement in the Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame in an announcement late Saturday.


Shipley, who served as head coach at then the University of Southwestern Louisiana from 1957-73, guided the Cajuns to a 293-126 record that included 15 winning records in a 16-year career. The first coach at a predominantly white state college in the Deep South to give scholarships to black student-athletes, Shipley earned Gulf States Coach of the Year honors four times and was twice named the Southland Conference Coach of the Year.


Under Shipley’s leadership, the Cajuns finished in the national Top 20 in each of his last six seasons – the first four in the college division polls, the last two in Division I. Starting in 1963, Shipley rattled off five Gulf States Conference Championships in six seasons, including a win at the 1964-65 NAIA District 27 Tournament Championship.


Shipley, who passed away in 2011, also put the Cajuns on the map nationally after moving up to the NCAA level in 1970-71 and advancing to the NCAA College Tournament that same season.


The next two seasons, Shipley led the Cajuns to two Southland Conference crowns and was ranked as high as eighth in the nation.


With stars like Hall of Fame member Bo Lamar, Roy Ebron and Marvin Winkler on his teams, the Cajuns went 19-5, 20-5, 16-10, 25-4 and 24-5 in his last five seasons. He briefly was head coach of the San Diego team in the ABA. Shipley was elected to the Louisiana Basketball Hall of Fame in 1986.

Athletic Network Footnote:

Click here for the M Basketball photo gallery, which includes the link to the Tribute to Beryl Shipley designed by Ed Dugas.

Click here for the Ragin’ Cajuns Reunions and Special Events Page, where viewers may click on the various events held in his honor, including the Unveiling of the Beryl Shipley Bust on Nov. 11, 2012. 

LSU product Alan Faneca, a nine-time Pro Bowl selection, along with All-Star pitcher Shane Reynolds and New Orleans Saints and Pelicans owner/chairman of the board Tom Benson headline the eight-member 2014 Induction Class.


Tulane and NFL standout Lionel Washington, Baton Rouge-Catholic High School cross country and track coach Pete Boudreaux, and Olympic gold medalist Venus Lacy, who helped Louisiana Tech win the 1988 women’s basketball national championship, are also in the Hall’s 2014 induction class. Legendary Cottonport football player, coach and official Richard "Moon" Ducote will be honored posthumously.


They will be officially enshrined Saturday, June 21, in Natchitoches to culminate the 2014 Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame Induction Celebration June 19-21.


The 2014 Induction Class will be showcased in the Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame Museum, operated by the Louisiana State Museum system in a partnership with the Louisiana Sports Writers Association. The striking two-story, 27,500-square foot structure faces Cane River Lake in the National Historic Landmark District of Natchitoches and has garnered worldwide architectural acclaim and rave reviews for its contents since its grand opening during the 2013 Hall of Fame induction weekend.


A 30-member Louisiana Sports Writers Association committee selected the 2014 inductees. The panel considered 114 nominees from 26 different sport categories on a 24-page ballot, said Hall of Fame chairman Doug Ireland.


The eight new inductees will raise the total of Hall of Fame members to 310 competitors honored since the first induction class —  baseball’s Mel Ott, world champion boxer Tony Canzoneri and LSU football great Gaynell Tinsley — were enshrined in 1959 after their election a year earlier.


The Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame includes 16 Pro Football Hall of Fame members, 18 Olympic medalists (10 gold medal winners), nine members of the Basketball Hall of Fame, seven of the NBA’s 50 Greatest Players, six Baseball Hall of Fame inductees, 34 College Football Hall of Fame members, five National High School Hall of Fame enshrines, jockeys with a combined 12 Triple Crown victories, six world boxing champions, seven Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame enshrinees, seven College Baseball Hall of Fame inductees,  seven College Basketball Hall of Fame members, four NBA Finals MVPs and two Super Bowl MVPs. Biographical information on all current members is available at the LaSportsHall.com website, with a steady stream of info available at the Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame Facebook page and the @LaSportsHall twitter account.


The 2014 Induction Celebration will kick off Thursday, June 19 with the press conference and reception. It includes three receptions, a youth sports clinic, and a Friday, June 20 celebrity pro-am golf scramble at Oak Wing Golf Course in Alexandria. Tickets for the Induction Dinner and Ceremonies, and golf entries, will go on sale this spring through the LaSportsHall.com website.


Also to be honored at the event will be two other Hall of Fame inductees, the winner of the 2014 Dave Dixon Louisiana Sports Leadership Award and the recipient of the 2014 Distinguished Service Award in Sports Journalism presented by the LSWA. Those award recipients will be announced in January.


Adding to the 302 sports competitors currently enshrined, 12 winners of the Dave Dixon Louisiana Sports Leadership award and 53 recipients of the Distinguished Service Award in Sports Journalism, there are 367 current members of the Hall of Fame.


The 2014 Induction Celebration weekend will be hosted by the Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame Foundation, the support organization for the Hall of Fame.  The LSHOF Foundation was established as a 501 c 3 non-profit entity in 1975 and is governed by a statewide board of directors.  For information on sponsorship opportunities, contact Foundation President/CEO Lisa Babin at (318) 458-0166 or lisababin@LaSportsHall.com.  Standard and customized sponsorships are available.


– Ragin  Cajuns –



Matt Sullivan
Assistant Sports Information Director
Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns
University of Louisiana at Lafayette
Cox Communications Athletic Center
201 Reinhardt Drive
Lafayette, LA 70506-4297
Office – (337) 482-6330
Mobile – (985) 981-0009
Twitter – @MattSulli123