Shipley Named to Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame
It’s been a long time coming.
Most would say way too long.
But Louisiana legendary basketball coach Beryl Shipley, who guided the Cajuns in their best seasons ever, has been named to the Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame in an announcement late Saturday night by the Louisiana Sports Writers Association.
Shipley, the winningest coach in Cajuns history (293-126), compiled a 104-29 record his final five seasons. His teams won five Gulf South Conference titles and two Southland Championships over a career that spanned from 1957-73. His team had only one losing season during his tenure.
In his final two seasons, the first in Division I, the Cajuns were ranked in the Top Ten in the nation.
But Shipley also was a trailblazer in the college game in the South. Shipley was the first coach at a predominately white state college in the deep south to offer scholarships to black student-athletes. Shipley was roundly criticized by other coaches and administrators for his actions.
He is joined by nine-Pro Bowl selection Alan Faneca of LSU, New Orleans Saints and Pelicans owner Tom Benson, all-star pitcher Shane Reynolds, Catholic of Baton Rouge track and cross country coach Pete Boudreaux, Tulane and NFL standout Lionel Washington and Olympic Gold Medalist Venus Lacy of Louisiana Tech. Former Cottonport player and coach “Moon” Ducote will be honored posthumously.
A thirty member committee of the Louisiana Sports Writers Association selected the inductees, who will be officially enshrined Saturday, June 21, 2014, in Natchitoches.