Hap Whitney
Hap Whitney

Event:
Wrestling Coach

Hall of Fame Class:
1997


A charter member of the Missouri Wrestling Hall of Fame, Hap Whitney had a won-lost record as MU's head wrestling coach of 88-55-3 from 1974-84. That followed a standout competitive career in which the St. Louis native became the first wrestler in Missouri high school history to win four state wrestling championships. To date, there have only been five. At Purdue University, he won a Big 10 Conference title and earned all-America honors by placing third at the 1956 NCAA Championships. He was an alternate to the 1956 U.S. Olympic team. His MU teams accomplished a number of notable firsts: the first place winner in the Big Eight Championships (1966), the first finalist at the Big Eight Championships (1967), the first team to earn points at the NCAA Championships (1967), the first and only undefeated season (1968) and the first nationally ranked team (1968). After his tenure as wrestling coach, he became assistant athletic director, serving until 1981 when he became director of physical education and athletics for the Columbia Public Schools. He has continued to work as a member of MU's football scorer and timers crew for many years. In 1993, he was the Missouri athletic director of the year and the Kiwanis Club's choice for the Columbia Sportsperson of the Year.

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