With 12 seasons as the head coach at two Missouri Valley Conference schools (Missouri State and Southern Illinois), Barry Hinson is the league’s winningest active coach with 209 overall victories and 114 conference wins. Only four head coaches in the 100-year history of the MVC have won more conference games. When it comes to the league’s annual tournament, Hinson’s win total is equally impressive. His 13 conference tournament victories ranks third all-time behind only Dana Altman (Creighton) and Rich Herrin (Southern Illinois), and he recently surpassed Nolan Richardson (Tulsa).
In two of his three seasons at Southern Illinois, Hinson has finished among the top vote getters for MVC Coach of the Year. In 2014, he finished runner-up for Coach of the Year to Wichita State’s Gregg Marshall, after Hinson’s squad improved from 10th to fourth place in the MVC, marking the biggest leap in the standings in school history.
The Salukis won eight of their last 12 games in 2014 and fans were so energized by the resurgence of the program that the final home game featured the first sell-out of SIU Arena in six years. The Salukis also advanced to the semifinals of the MVC Tournament for the first time in seven years.
Although SIU finished 10th in the league standings in 2013 with a 6-12 mark, Hinson placed third in the voting for Missouri Valley Conference Coach of the Year, the highest finish ever for the coach of a last-place MVC team.
Hinson won over the fan base with his likable, no-nonsense, common-man demeanor. He kept a positive outlook after the team began conference play with a 1-10 record. On Feb. 5, the Salukis snapped a six-game losing streak by beating No. 22 Wichita State for their first win over a ranked opponent since 2008. That victory was the first of six wins in the team’s final eight regular-season games. After the season, Hinson was rewarded with a one-year contract extension that will keep him at SIU through the 2017-18 season.
Hinson was named the school’s basketball head coach during a press conference on March 28, 2012. He became just the 13th head coach in the 99-year history of the program.
Hinson, 53, served four years on Bill Self’s staff at the University of Kansas from 2008-12. The Jayhawks were one of the nation’s premier programs during that four-year span with a combined 107-21 record and a trip to the National Championship game in 2012.
Prior to Kansas, Hinson was the head coach at Missouri State for nine seasons. While at Missouri State, he guided the Bears to a 169-117 record (.591) with postseason NIT teams in 2000, 2005, 2006 and 2007. His 2006 squad was left out of the NCAA Tournament with a 21 RPI. That club went on to win NIT games over Stanford and Houston.
Although Southern Illinois dominated the Missouri Valley Conference by winning six-straight championships from 2002 to 2007, Hinson’s Bears beat Southern 10 times — more than any other conference school during his nine-year tenure. The Bears had three 20-win seasons under Hinson and advanced to the finals of the MVC Tournament three times. Twenty-three of Hinson’s 26 players, who completed their eligibility as seniors for the Bears, received undergraduate degrees from Missouri State. Thirteen of Hinson’s players went on to play professionally overseas.
Hinson spent eight years as a high school coach in Oklahoma before landing a college job on Self’s staff at Oral Roberts in 1993. Four years later, he took over for Self at ORU and produced records of 19-12 and 17-11 in two years as head coach and tied for two Mid-Continent Conference regular-season titles.
The Iba Awards were created in 1994 by the Rotary Club of Tulsa to recognize an influential male and a female premiere athlete for their success in their sport, and more importantly, for being positive role models who give back to their communities – not only by donating to worthy causes, but by being personally dedicated and involved in their chosen charities.
The awards are named after Henry P. Iba, former Oklahoma State University basketball coach and coach of three U.S. Olympic basketball teams. He was an unparalleled success as a coach, a leader and a citizen and these awards recognize and honor athletes who best exemplify a high degree of citizenship in his image.