ONLY TEXAS TEAM CROWNED COLLEGE BASKETBALL CHAMPS

by Bartee Haile

The undefeated Miners of Texas Western gave the home crowd thrills aplenty on Feb. 14, 1966 by slipping past Arizona State 69-67 for their 19th consecutive victory. The miracle maker in El Paso was a former two-time all-state basketball star from Oklahoma. Don Haskins played college ball for Hank Iba at Oklahoma A&M (now Oklahoma State) and like many disciples of the living legend chose coaching for a career. Haskins got his start in the Texas Panhandle with high school teams at Benjamin (1955-56), Hedley (1956-60) and Dumas (1960-61). He won 79 percent of the time, an impressive record but hardly an automatic springboard to the college level.

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