By Rachel Morse, Staff Writer
The university’s athletic department is honoring three individuals for their athletic careers.
They will induct Keith Lytle, assistant baseball coach, Andrea Drake, softball pitcher in the late ‘80s, and Sally Cole, women’s soccer team member from 1999-2002, into the university’s Athletic Hall of Fame.
The ceremony will be hosted at 11 a.m. Jan. 21 in the Great Hall in Tom and Brenda McDaniel Center.
The Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony is $25 and open to the public.
This is the first time in more than three years the department has chosen multiple inductees for the Hall of Fame, Athletic Director Jim Abbott said.
The ceremony was combined with an alumni banquet as a part of Homecoming.
“We have a rich tradition in athletics at OCU,” Abbott said. “Having it as a separate event gives us the ability to recognize more than one person.”
Nominations for the Hall of Fame are taken throughout the year, Abbott said.
A committee determines from the nomination who will be recognized.
The new inductees were announced in December.
The Hall of Fame is one of the highest honors to receive in the athletic department, Abbott said.
Abbott said he has a high regard for all the athletes being honored, not only because of their athletic ability but also their character.
“They are three really phenomenal individuals,” he said.
Lytle’s legacy comes not only from his knowledge of baseball but also from his emphasis on treating players as equals, Abbott said.
“I think that a lot of the success we’ve had is due to the fact that he is just as interested in character and integrity as he is in winning ball games,” he said.
Lytle, who has been an assistant baseball coach for almost 25 years, said the respect he receives from Denny Crabaugh, head baseball coach, keeps him coaching at OCU.
“What makes this so unique is I am an assistant coach,” he said. “Whoever is responsible for picking me to be inducted, I am just so flattered that they would do it under these circumstances.”
To order tickets call Melody Seeley, athletic department administrative assistant, at (405) 208-5309.