5. Mike Boynton (2017-present)
Although Mike Boynton hasn’t coached Oklahoma State for long, he has already entrenched himself in OSU basketball history. In the 22 seasons of the Big 12 conference’s existence, only three teams have swept Kansas in the regular season: the 1998-99 Nebraska team and the 1999-2000 and 2000-01 Iowa State squad. Now, Boynton and the 2017-18 Cowboys can add themselves to that list. Boynton has had a successful first season at the helm, winning 18 games and making it to the NIT. The program was under intense scrutiny at times in the wake of NCAA investigations involving former assistant coach Lamont Evans, but Boynton stayed focused, making it a goal to stick to winning games. OSU has a keeper in Boynton, who is primed to move up this list should he stay on as coach.
4. Paul Hansen (1979-1986)
Any coach who began his career after No. 2 or coached before No. 1 on this list (a hint of what’s to come for those who know their Cowboy history) got lost in a bit of a shuffle of coaches, but Paul Hansen’s OSU career was surprisingly fruitful. The Cowboys were 107-89 in the seven years Hansen was coach. OSU also made the NCAA Tournament and won the Big 8 conference tournament championship during the 1982-83 season under Hansen.
3. Travis Ford (2008-16)
His time at OSU might not have had a glorious ending, but Travis Ford had a successful tenure as the Cowboys’ coach. Ford posted a 155-111 record in Stillwater. Ford also coached OSU to five NCAA Tournaments during that time. Ford was a great recruiter, bringing in six classes ranked in the top half of the Big 12 and three classes that were in the top 30 nationally, according to 247sports recruitment rankings. One of the players he recruited, Marcus Smart, was Big 12 Player of the Year his freshman season as a Cowboy.
2. Eddie Sutton (1990-2006)
Eddie Sutton, the namesake of the court where OSU plays every game, is a legend in not only the OSU sports scene but also nationally. It’s a shame he still isn’t in the Basketball Hall of Fame, but that’s an argument for another blog. Sutton has 806 wins through 36 years of coaching college basketball, and 368 of those victories were at OSU. The Cowboys made it to the NCAA Tournament 14 times and advanced to two Final Fours under Sutton. Simply put, Eddie Sutton deserves the chants he gets of “Eddie, Eddie,” every time he attends a game at OSU.
1. Henry Iba (1934-70)
Although Gallagher-Iba Arena is partially named for him, Henry “Hank” Iba is known for more than just his immense basketball prowess. The man did it all. Along with serving as the Cowboy basketball coach for 36 years, Iba was the athletic director at OSU (which was Oklahoma A&M College until 1957) for 35 years and the Oklahoma A&M baseball coach from 1934-41. The Cowboy basketball team won two national titles with Iba in the 1945 and ‘46 seasons. Iba also coached Team USA at the 1964, ’68 and ’72 Olympics, where USA won two golds and a silver medal. Henry Iba was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame in 1969 and died in 1993, but his spirit lives on in the banners his teams won that hang in the arena bearing his name.