The Missouri Basketball Coaches Association held its annual Hall of Fame ceremony last Saturday in Springfield, Missouri.
One of the members of the Class of 2018 Hall of Fame class was yours truly, and it was indeed an honor to be included amongst these esteemed individuals who have enjoyed so much success as high school and college coaches while also helping to shape the lives of so many young people.
Well, that’s enough talk about my own induction. The individual who I really want to congratulate is my friend Randy Reed, who was also inducted after putting in two wonderful decades of success at McCluer North, St. Louis Community College and Cardinal Ritter. He has won more than 400 games and several championships.
As a player, Reed was a great high school player for Vashon in the late 1970’s and an All-American junior college performer at Forest Park Community College. He finished his collegiate career at Kansas State, where he helped the Wildcats to the Elite Eight of the NCAA Tournament in 1981.
When you look beyond the three programs where Reed was a great player and see who the head coaches were at these schools, it is easy to see how a potential Hall of Fame coaching career could be born. Reed played at Vashon for Floyd Irons, Forest Park for Bob Nelson and Kansas State for the late Jack Hartman. All three men are Hall of Fame coaches and legendary figures who also knew how to teach the game.
I was armed with this knowledge more than 20 years ago when my alma mater, McCluer North, was looking to hire Randy Reed as its new boys’ basketball coach. When talking to then-Athletic Director Dave Carpenter, I couldn’t hide my excitement. I told them this was a no-brainer. Not only has he learned from the best basketball minds, Reed was also good with young people.
Reed was hired and the rest, as they say, was history. It took him a few years to get the program going, but once he got McCluer North performing at its peak level, there wasn’t a better program in the state of Missouri. In a 10-year period, Reed led McCluer North to seven district championships, four Final Four appearances and three state championships in 2007, 2011 and 2012.
When Randy was at McCluer North, the Stars took on all comers. Only one program from the state of Missouri has gone over to the Illinois side to win the Collinsville, Centralia and Carbondale Christmas Tournaments. That would be McCluer North. The Stars also won tournament titles at St. Francis Borgia, Normandy and Troy. They competed everywhere and they won everywhere.
As a McCluer North alum, I owe a great debt of gratitude to Randy Reed for making our basketball program a statewide powerhouse. It has also been great to enjoy a long friendship with him over this time period. Congratulations of the special honor, my friend.
Statewide Basketball Honors
Webster Groves star Courtney Ramey was named Mr. Basketball in the state of Missouri. The 6’4” Ramey led the Statesmen to back-to-back Class 5 state championships. He leaves Webster Groves as the school’s all-time leader in scoring and assists. Ramey also collected the award for Class 5 Player of the Year in Missouri.
Incarnate Word Academy girls’ star Sonya Morris was named Ms. Basketball in the state of Missouri. Like Courtney Ramey, Morris led her school to back-to-back state championships as Incarnate Word dominated the Class 4 scene. Morris has signed with DePaul University.
Whitfield boys’ star Torrence Watson was named the Class 3 Player of the Year. The Mizzou-bound Watson averaged more than 30 points a game to lead the St. Louis metro area in scoring, including three games of more than 50 points this season.