selected by ballot through a statewide selection committee. Votes from TSHOF members, inductees, board members and selection committee were tabulated by Simply Voting.
The newly elected inductees for the Class of 2024 are as follows (in alphabetical order): Jamaal Charles, Andy Cooper (deceased), Judge Roy Hofheinz (deceased), Barbara Jacket (deceased), Mike Leach (deceased), Colt McCoy, Jackie Sherrill, Bubba Thornton, and Christa Williams.
The 63rd Annual Texas Sports Hall of Fame Induction Banquet presented by Texas Farm Bureau Insurance, will be held in the BASE at Extraco Events Center in Waco, Texas, on Saturday, April 13, 2024. Tickets and sponsorship packages for the 2024 TSHOF Induction Banquet and reception are on sale now and available at tshof.org/induction. For more information or questions, please contact Krista Martin at email@example.com | 254-756-1633
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Jamaal Charles- Football |Port Arthur, Texas native. Being diagnosed with a learning disability, he competed in the Special Olympics at 10 years old. Later on, Charles would become a two-time Willie Ray Smith Award recipient for Southeast Texas Offensive MVP out of Memorial High School before getting offers to play at the University of Texas. In both high school and college, he was a dual-sport athlete competing in football and track & field. During his time running track in college, Charles won the 2006 Big 12 Championship in the 100-meter dash for the Longhorns and was a four-time All-American. While playing college football, he was a true freshman on the 2005 National Championship team and ended up ranking fifth all-time in single-season rushing touchdowns (18), fifth career rushing touchdowns (36), and fourth in career rushing yards (3,328). In 2008, Charles was drafted to the Kansas City Chiefs where he terrorized NFL defenses for seven seasons, becoming a four-time Pro Bowler and leading the NFL in rushing touchdowns in 2013.Upon retirement in 2019, Charles ended his career being ranked first in career yards (7,260), fourth in career touchdowns (43), first in rushing average (5.5), and first in single-game rushing yards (239).
Andy Cooper- Baseball - Andy “Lefty” Cooper played baseball at A.J. Moore High School and eventually went to play at Paul Quinn College in Waco, Texas. The Negro League All-Star pitcher and manager played primarily for the Detroit Stars (1920-1927) and the Kansas City Monarchs (1928-29, & 1932-39). In 1923 he had a record of 16-7 and an ERA of 3.64 with nearly 200 innings pitched. In 1928, the crafty left-hander was traded from the Detroit Stars to the Kansas City Monarchs for three players. Toward the end of his pitching career, Cooper became a late-inning reliever and set the Negro League career record for saves. As the manager for the Kansas City Monarchs (1936-1940), Cooper guided the team to four consecutive first-place finishes in the Negro American League from 1937 to 1940. Legendary Kansas City Monarch, Buck O’Neil described Cooper like this - “He was the best manager I ever played for, and I played for some good ones. He was also a father figure and a teacher, and he helped me a great deal, as he did other players who were still developing.” Tragically, while still managing the Monarchs, Cooper passed away from a heart ailment. In 1941 the Chicago Defender newspaper reported, “With his health in decline, Cooper’s mother Emma brought him to her home in Waco, where he passed away on June 3 at the age of 45. Cooper was buried in Greenwood Cemetery in Waco.” Andy Cooper was inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, New York in 2006.
Judge Roy Hofheinz- Administration- A state legislator at age 22, a Harris County judge at age 24 and the mayor of Houston at age 40, Hofheinz played an instrumental role in bringing baseball to Houston. He joined the Houston Sports Association (HSA) in 1959 with the goal of bringing a Major League Baseball franchise to the city. The following year Hofheinz was able to secure the birth of Houston's new national league franchise, the Colt .45s. They played their inaugural game on the Judge's 50th birthday, beating the Chicago Cubs 11-2. Hofheinz was a driving force in designing Houston’s famous Astrodome. The club was later renamed the Astros to coincide with the opening of the first domed stadium in professional sports history which famously became known as the “Eighth Wonder of the World.” Hofheinz revolutionized baseball and the sports industry in many ways, including his decision to utilize an artificial playing surface in 1966 which he dubbed “AstroTurf”. His contributions to baseball and the city of Houston earned him an induction into the Texas Baseball Hall of Fame (2006) and the Houston Astros Hall of Fame (2021).
Barbara Jacket- Track & Field- From 1965 to 1991, Jacket coached the women’s track and field team at Prairie View A&M earning 10 National Association Intercollegiate Athletic Titles. Under Coach Jacket, she also led the men’s track team to two SWAC Outdoor Conference Championships (1969 & ‘70). She was named SWAC Coach of the Year on 23 occasions and NAIA Coach of the Year five times. Her teams won 23 SWAC championships, and Jacket tutored 57 All-Americans. In 1990, she became the only women athletic director in the SWAC when she was named to the position at Prairie View. Outside of Prairie View A&M, she also coached in the 1979 Pan American Games as an assistant coach for the U.S. Women’s team. Jacket was the head coach for the Women’s team at the 1975 World University Games and for Team USA for the 1987 and 1991 World Championships. Jacket is a member of the International Women’s Sports Hall of Fame and the Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association.
Mike Leach- Football- Mike Leach, or the “The Pirate '' as he was known by many, was born in Susanville, CA before taking over the college football world. Leach took his first head coaching job at Texas Tech University at the end of the 1999 season. From 2000-2009, Leach led the Red Raiders to 10 consecutive winning seasons and nine bowl appearances with five wins. Leach left Texas Tech as the winningest football coach (by wins) in program history with a record of 84-43. Following his time at Texas Tech, Leach also experienced successful head coaching positions at Washington State (2012-’19) and Mississippi State (2020-’22) before passing in December 2022. His 21-year coaching career was highlighted by a 158-107 overall record, 17 bowl trips, two-time National Coach of the Year, three-time conference coach of the year and is credited as the mastermind behind the NCAA record-setting “Air Raid” offense.
Colt McCoy- Football | Colt McCoy was a two-time All-State quarterback at Jim Ned HS in Tuscola, Texas, who set the record for most yards by a 2A quarterback. As a decorated high school player in the State, McCoy went on to play at the University of Texas (2005-’09) where he became one of the winningest QBs in NCAA History. McCoy went 45-8 as a starter with the Longhorns and set 47 school records, including the marks for career passing yards (13,253), touchdowns (112), and completion percentage (70.3). During his time at UT, McCoy was a 2008 Walter Camp Award recipient, 2009 Heisman Trophy finalist and four-year team MVP. He was drafted by the Cleveland Browns in the third round of the 2010 NFL Draft. Throughout his 12-year career NFL Career, McCoy played quarterback for the San Francisco 49ers, Washington Commanders, New York Giants and the Arizona Cardinals.
Jackie Sherrill- Football - Jackie Sherrill started coaching as a graduate assistant at his alma mater, the University of Alabama during the 1966 season. From there, he moved to the University of Arkansas, Iowa State University, University of Pittsburg, Washington State University, Texas A&M University, and Mississippi State University. Sherrill coached Texas A&M from 1982-1988 and had a 52-28-1 record. He led the Aggies to three Southwest Conference Titles (1985, 1986, & 1987) and won the 1986 Cotton Bowl over Auburn and the 1988 Cotton Bowl over Notre Dame. Over his coaching tenure, he compiled a record of 180–120–4, recognized for his coaching prowess by receiving the Walter Camp Coach of the Year Award (1981) and winning Southwest Conference Coach of the Year three times in (1985-1987). In 1983 he revitalized Texas A&M’s beloved 12th Man traditions when allowed walk-on tryouts from the student body to field members of the Aggies kickoff coverage team.
Bubba Thornton- Track & Field | Keller, Texas native. During his 31-year track & field coaching career, Thornton coached athletes to a combined 35 NCAA event titles, more than 300 All-America honors, and 161 conference championships. Thornton lettered in two sports at TCU - football (WR, DB & RB) and track & field from 1967-1969. He was drafted in the 14th round of the 1969 AFL draft by the Buffalo Bills. From 1977 to 1981 he was the athletic director and head football coach at his alma mater, Keller High School. He then returned to TCU to coach track and field (1982-1995), and then eventually to the University of Texas (1996-2013). He won 11 men’s Big 12 conference championships - and one SWC Men’s Outdoor Championship in 1996. He was selected to coach the 1996 USA World Junior Championship team, served as Asst. Head Coach of the USA Olympic Team in 2000, and was head coach of the 2003 USA World Championship team and the 2008 USA Olympic Track & Field Team in Beijing. Thornton was named Big 12 Coach of the Year ten times, USTFCCCA South Central Region Indoor Coach of the Year (2006, 2007), USTFCCCA South Central Region Outdoor Coach of the Year (2006), NCAA District VI Coach of the Year (1999). He has coached 34 NCAA national championships (27 individual & 7 relays) Thornton was also inducted into the Texas Track and Field Coaches Hall of Fame in 2015.
Christa Williams- Softball-Born in Houston and raised in Pasadena, Texas. Williams was a softball pitcher who was a two-time Olympic Gold Medalist (1996 & 2000) and two-time ISF World Champion (1995 & 1998). As a freshman at Dobie High School, she led the Longhorns to their first state championship in 1993. In 1995 she pitched a perfect game against Plano East, claiming the Longhorns’ second state title After transferring from UCLA in 1997, Williams landed at the University of Texas (1998-’99) where she earned Big 12 Newcomer of the Year and NCAA Regional Tournament MVP (1998). She was a three-time NCAA All-American (1997, UCLA and ‘98 & ’99, UT). She helped lead Texas to the 1998 NCAA WCWS. After nine seasons coaching at Friendswood High School, in 2023 she was named Head Softball Coach for Kingwood High School in Kingwood, Texas. Other Honors included: Gold medalist at Pan American Games Qualifier (1994), where she threw a perfect game and no-hitter and finished with a 3-0 record, 0.00 ERA, and 45 strikeouts; gold medalist at ISF Junior Women's World Championship (1995), Gold medalist at Olympic Games in Atlanta, Georgia (1996), Gold medalist at ISF World Championships (1998), Gold medalist at U.S. Olympic Cup (1999), where she pitched a complete game shutout against Australia in Championship Game.
About the Texas Sports Hall of Fame
With the mission to preserve the legacy of inductees and the history of sports throughout the state, the Texas Sports Hall of Fame celebrates the accomplishments of athletes, coaches and administrators who have brought fame and honor to the State of Texas. Established as the nation’s first and largest state sports hall of fame in 1951, the TSHOF is home to over 400 sports legends and 13,000 pieces of memorabilia. The museum which is located in Waco, Texas, also offers several educational tours and houses three other halls of fame: the Texas Tennis Hall of Fame, the Southwest Conference Hall of Fame and the Texas High School Football Hall of Fame. For more information & updates about the museum and upcoming events, visit www.tshof.org or call 254-756-1633