By GARY STALLARD
In helping to kick off the 2019-2020 seasons, Angelina College and the Roadrunner Foundation couldn’t have found a more legendary and inspiring speaker to address its student-athletes.
Former University of Texas women’s basketball coach Jody Conradt will be the guest speaker for the event. In a career spanning 38 years – 31 of those at UT – Conradt won 900 games, the second-best mark in all-time wins for an NCAA Division I basketball coach. Her Longhorns in the 1980s achieved national prominence, remaining atop the national polls for several seasons. In 1986, Conradt and her players earned the Longhorn women’s program its first (and to date, only) national championship. She was the first women’s collegiate basketball coach to achieve 700 wins, and was the first to coach her team to an undefeated season. From 1978 to 1990, Conradt's Longhorns did not lose a single Southwest Conference game, a streak of 183 consecutive conference victories. She was a six-time National Coach of the Year and eight-time Conference Coach of the Year. In 1995, Conradt was inducted into the International Women's Sports Hall of Fame; in 1997, she was inducted into the Texas Sports Hall of Fame.
Over her storied career, Conradt coached 28 players who went on to play professionally, four U. S. Olympians, eight Kodak All-Americans and three players who earned a combined 13 National Player of the Year honors.
During her tenure, Conradt’s student-athletes achieved a 99 percent graduation rate.
Her long list of accomplishments culminated with numerous career awards, including enshrinement in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1998 – the first active women’s coach, and only the second woman, to achieve the honor. She also was inducted into the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame in 1999. In 2008, the Atlanta Tipoff Club presented Conradt and Dick Vitale with the Naismith Award as a “pays tribute to the individuals who have made a significant impact on women's and men's college basketball.”
Coach Conradt was born in Goldthwaite, Texas, where she became a high school standout, averaging 40 points per game for her high school career. She played basketball at Baylor University and finished her collegiate career averaging 20 points per game.
Conradt retired from her 38-year coaching career following the 2006-2007 season. Upon her retirement, the late Pat Summit said of Conradt, “She’s left her footprints all over the game and all over a lot of us coaches.”
The Roadrunner Foundation, hosts of the banquet, are active supporters of all Angelina College athletics programs. This past week, the Foundation held the 12th Annual Guy Davis Golf Tournament at Crown Colony, which featured a record 50 teams with approximately 250 players. All funds generated from the tournament and the Foundation’s activities go toward the AC athletics teams to help with various expenses. In 2019, the Lady Roadrunner women’s basketball team and softball team qualified for their respective national tournaments, and a portion of the Foundation’s funds helped with those expenses.
The “Meet the Roadrunners” banquet will take place on Saturday, August 24 inside Shands Gymnasium on the Angelina College campus. This is an annual even at which the Foundation, backed by generous sponsors in the community, welcomes the athletes and their guests to the first gathering of the year via a hamburger meal. The event commences at 6 p.m., and Coach Conradt will begin speaking at approximately 6:45 p.m.
The gymnasium stands will be open to the public to hear Coach Conradt speak. There will be no admission fee, but donations toward Angelina College Athletics are greatly appreciated.
For further information, contact Foundation president Wes Welch at email@example.com.
The e-mail address for AC’s Sports Information Director is firstname.lastname@example.org.