Entries in Henry P. "Hank" Iba (1)

Tuesday
Jun232009

Henry P. "Hank" Iba

Enshrined 1969
Easton, MO
August 6, 1904 - January 15, 1993

Biography

A coach's coach, and mentor to such contemporary greats as Hall of Famer Bob Knight, Henry Iba did more than win national championships and gold medals. Although known for his victories as collegiate coach at Oklahoma A&M and as a three-time mentor of U.S. Olympic teams, Iba was more interested in the fundamental execution of the game and playing a true team sport than in scoring. Iba's teams were methodical, ball-controlling units that featured weaving patterns of passing, which often led to low-scoring games. But his teams had such tight control of the ball, they didn't need to score big to win the game. Iba's "swinging gate" defense (a man-to-man with team flow) was emulated by many. Behind dominating 7-foot Hall of Fame center Bob Kurland, Iba's Aggies became the first team to win consecutive NCAA titles (1945 and 1946). Iba won 767 games, second best all-time when he retired. The only coach in history to win two Olympic Gold Medals, he will also be remembered for coaching the 1972 Olympic team that lost by one point to the Soviet Union in a controversial finish.

Career Highlights

National Coach of the Year, 1945, 1946
NCAA Finals, 1949
Won or shared Missouri Valley Conference title fourteen times
Big Eight Championship, 1965