Athletics Misc (1069)
Charles L. Mansfield
Attended high school at Clinton (Mo.) High School. Lettered one year in track and three years in football and basketball. Received honorable mention for the all-state basketball squad as a senior.
Enrolled at Baker in the fall of 1957. Was a four-year letterman in football and was named to an all-conference team three times. Earned two additional letters in basketball. Member of the Zeta Chi fraternity and held offices of president, vice president and pledge trainer. Served as an officer of the University’s B Club. Graduated in 1961.
Taught and coached football, basketball and track in 1961-1963 at Oswego High School. The football team won the league title in 1962 and he led the basketball team to the state tournament in 1962. Both the ’62 and ’63 track teams won league.
Returned to school at Kansas University in 1963 and earned a master’s degree in education in 1964. He also served as assistant football coach at Baker.
Taught and coached at Claflin High School in 1964-65, where he served as head basketball coach, assistant football coach and track coach.
Accepted an offer to serve as principal, teacher and coach at Baldwin High School for 1965. Served as assistant football and track coach and head coach in basketball.
In 1966, returned to Baker, serving as assistant football coach for nine years, head track coach for one year, head baseball coach for two years and head basketball coach until 1975.
From 1975 to 1979 served as principal at Cheney High School. From 1979 to 1980 served as principal at Garnett High School, moving on to serve as assistant superintendent at Clay Center USD 379 until 2000.
After formally retiring, accepted a one-year appointment as the elementary principal at Valley Heights due to an illness to the principal.
Currently works part time for the Southeast Regional Education Service Center at Greenbush as a community liaison and establishing drop-out recovery programs. Also works with McPherson & Jacobson, an executive recruiting and development company doing searches for school district superintendents.
Served on several boards, committees and an educational task force on school finance. Additionally was asked to make numerous presentations to educational conferences throughout the region.
Married to Sylvia and has three children, Adam, Megan and Mark.
Cecil O. Pryor
Graduated from Fredonia High School in 1925. Member of the National Honor Society and voted “Most Popular” by senior classmates. A four-year letterman in track and football. He was selected captain of the football team and chosen to the all-conference team in basketball as a senior. Set a school record in the 100-yard dash (10.1 seconds) that stood for 45 years. Held the state record in the 220-low hurdles and placed first in that event at the Kansas Relays in 1925.
Enrolled at Baker in the fall of 1925. Earned three letters in football and track. Played halfback on the football team and was the team’s leading ground gainer as a senior. In track ran both the low and high hurdles. Was elected president of the “B Club” and was a member of the Zeta Chi fraternity. Graduated with a degree in biology in 1929. Earned a master’s degree in physical education from the State University of Iowa in 1939.
Began his coaching career at Corning (Kansas) High School, coaching football, basketball and track from 1929 to 1932. During these years led the football team to a combined record of 23-3-1 and the basketball team to a record of 34-18, including a visit to the school’s first ever state basketball tournament. His track team of 1931 won the Baker Relays.
In 1932 accepted a teaching and coaching position at Fredonia (Kansas) High School. Coached there until his death in 1967. Began as an assistant coach in both football and basketall and later head coach of both sports. Was the head track coach during his entire career at Fredonia.
During the years his teams won numerous district and regional titles and his individual student/athletes won dozens of individual honors and awards and set long-standing state records in track and field events.
In 1939 established the Fredonia Relays. In 1949, his team won the Kansas State Track title and in 1962, was chosen Master Teacher by the Fredonia Teachers Association.
Both the athletic field in Fredonia and a traveling trophy at the Fredonia Relays for the two-mile run event have been named in his honor and memory.
One of the original honorees inducted into the Kansas State High School Activities Association Hall of Fame on March 22, 1975.
Was married to Agnes Lamoreaux and together they had two sons, Richard Dean Pryor and Billy Max Pryor.
Attended Iola High School in Iola, Kansas. Participated in and earned six letters in football and track. During summers, played American Legion baseball.
Enrolled at Baker in the fall of 1968 and became an immediate starter for the Wildcat football squad. During his four years at Baker played linebacker and defensive end on defense, center and running back on offense and place kicker. Lettered all four years at Baker.
Lettered four years as a member of the Wildcat track team. Participated in the high jump and won conference in that event. Threw the discus, shot put and javelin. Held the school record for a short time in the javelin. Ran the 220-yard dash, the 100-yard dash and participated as a member of the 440-yard relay team with a best time of 42.6 seconds, a school record that stands to this day. Participated in the decathlon at the Kansas Relays.
On campus was a member of the Kappa Sigma fraternity and participated in intramural basketball.
About halfway through his senior football season, assistant football coach Charlie Mansfield convinced head coach Jim Irick to try him at running back against Missouri Valley. In the game, Wright led all rushers with 154 yards. During his career was named the Wildcats’ most valuable player, team co-captain and was selected to several all-conference teams. After his senior campaign was named an NAIA.All-American. The Baker Orange presented Wright its first ever “Athlete-of-the-Year” Award for 1971-1972.
Following graduation from Baker with a Bachelor of Science degree in physical education had a free-agent tryout with the Kansas City Chiefs of the NFL. Signed a free-agent contract and went to training camp in 1972 with the Chiefs as a running back.
Career has been in farming and raising, training and showing horses. In 1987 purchased a facility in Ottawa and along with his wife formed a business to train Western Performance Horses. In this enterprise, has trained and shown many horses in the National Reining Horse Association, where he won the NRHA National Derby in 2001 and 2002, competing against over 200 riders. Was the NRHA Futurity Reserve Champion two consecutive years, co-champion at the Quarter Horse Congress Reining futurity and has trained and shown Custom Pistol, the highest money-earning horse in NRHA history.
Married to Janet Robinson Wright, ’72, and together they have one son, Tod.
Attended high school at Osawatomie, Kansas, from 1951 to 1955. Participated in football, basketball and track. In football, lettered all four years and was named all-conference in his junior and senior years. Lettered three years in basketball and was named to the all-conference team as a senior. Lettered three years as a member of the track team.
Enrolled at Baker in the fall of 1955 and made an immediate impact on the football team. Went on to play and letter all four years. Was named a member of the Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference all-conference team as a junior and senior and as a member of the NAIA All-American second team after his senior campaign, helping the Wildcats to the conference championship that year. Participated as a member of the varsity track team as a sophomore and intramural basketball for four years. Member of the University’s “B” Club. Graduated with a degree in social studies and physical education.
Following teaching stints in the elementary school of Linwood, Kansas, and the high school in Overbrook, Kansas, enrolled at the University of Kansas and worked as an instructor in the Reading and Study Skills Laboratory while he completed work on two additional degrees, an Ed.S., and an Educational Doctorate that was conferred in 1967.
In his career, served as an assistant professor at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, from 1969 to 1972; as associate professor of special education at the George Peabody College for Teachers in Nashville, Tenn., from 1972 to 1976, and in 1976 was named professor of special education and served at George Peabody until 1990.
He retired in 2002 as the senior scientist from the University of Kansas’ affiliated program at the Schiefelbusch Institute of Life Span Studies in Parsons, Kansas, where he was an honorary professor in the Department of Human Development and Family Life of the Department of Special Education.
Served in numerous administrative roles in the field of higher education, won fifteen separate grants for studies in his field, maintained several professional affiliations in organizations within his field, authored or co-authored an impressive number of articles for books and journals in his field of study, and was widely sought after as a speaker. In this regard, delivered some 45 separate major presentations to scholarly meetings.
Additionally was presented with a Leadership Award for lifetime contributions to the education of children with EBD, and the Outstanding Service Award from the Midwest Symposium for Leadership in Behavior Disorders. Had the annual award to the Outstanding Graduate Student in Teacher Preparation at the Special Education Department of Vanderbilt University named in his honor.
Emmalie Gessner Cowherd
Earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from Baker with a cumulative 3.98 grade-point average. Ranked No. 1 in graduating class and was a member of Alpha Delta Sigma, a national honorary society. On campus, was a member of the Delta Delta Delta sorority and served as its president. Prior to intercollegiate sports, participated in a wide array of campus athletic competition and was voted the Outstanding Woman Athlete Award as a senior. Served as an officer of the junior class, as vice president of Panhellenic and as president of the Women’s Athletic Association. Was awarded the A.A.U.W. award for Outstanding Senior Woman.
Began teaching and coaching career at Baldwin High School. Taught psychology, general science, health and physical education. Served as pep club and junior class sponsor.
Continued teaching and coaching at Amity Regional Senior High School, Woodbridge, Conn. Taught general biology, human physiology and physical education. Coached basketball, synchronized swimming and softball. The 1966 softball team was undefeated.
Returned to Baker to teach and coach in 1976. Teaching responsibilities included first aid, swimming and softball. Chief responsibilities included organizing and coaching the University’s first intercollegiate varsity and junior varsity programs in softball and basketball. Recruited all athletes, developed the teams' schedules and purchased all associated equipment and uniforms. Coached the basketball team from 1976 to 1978 and the softball team in 1976-1983. The 1981 softball team went to National A.I.A.W. (Association of Intercollegiate Athletics for Women) tournament and finished ninth in the nation for Division III. The 1982 team went to the same tournament and finished third in the nation.
Additionally taught swimming in a number of capacities and places for 34 years. Was a certified water safety instructor and a water safety instructor trainer. Certified to teach C.P.R.
Served as a member of the University’s Alumni Board of Directors for six years.
Currently serves as business manager for Cowherd & Sons Farms, Carrollton, Mo.
Married to Clifton R. Cowherd. Has four sons, Benjamin Gessner Polen ’89, Dallas Allen Polen III ’91, Johnathan Alan Cowherd and Andrew Michael Cowherd.
Dennis began playing and loving the game of golf at the early age of three. He had his first hole-in-one at Santa Fe Hills Country Club at age eight.
He graduated in 1964 from Center High School, where he lettered in golf for the Center High team and won the conference medalist honors two years. At age 17 he was the runner-up in the Kansas City Golf Association’s Junior Championship Tournament. In that same year, he qualified to represent Kansas and Missouri in the U.S.G.A. National Junior Golf Tournament that was held in Florence, S.C. In 1967, Dennis tied for Missouri Amateur Medalist at Blue Hills Country Club.
He enrolled at Baker in the fall of 1964 and played four years on the golf team for Coach Karl Spear. In 1967, he had the University’s first hole-in-one during a competitive round against Park College and Ottawa University. Baker won that tournament and he was a medalist. He lettered and represented Baker at the NAIA National Golf Tournament all four years. During his senior year he was the Kansas Conference and NAIA District Champion. He also assisted Coach Spear in teaching golf which was offered as a class to fulfill the University’s physical education requirement.
On campus Dennis was a member of the Sigma Phi Epsilon fraternity and served as president his junior year. He graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in psychology and sociology in 1968.
Following graduation he has devoted his career to golf and currently serves as President/CEO of Smiley’s Golf Complex in Lenexa, Kansas. Additionally he has developed an international reputation for golf course and entertainment complex design. Through his career, he played with some of the most widely recognized names in amateur and professional golf, including Tom Watson, Greg Norman, Raymond Floyd, Lee Trevino, Dave Barr, Patty Berg, Mike Reid, Bob Tway, Calvin Peete and Gary Halberg. To this day he continues to play golf and competitive tennis.
He is active in his local church and has served as a volunteer leader there for several years.
He is married to Judy and has three children, Jeannine, Julie and Jeff, from a previous marriage.
Attended Oak Grove High School in Oak Grove, Missouri. Wrestled, participated in track and played football where he was a starter and leader on offense. In 1985, only three years after graduating, his football jersey (No. 35) was retired.
Was recruited to Baker by Coach Charlie Richard. Played all four years as a member of the Wildcat varsity squad. Was selected to the all-conference offensive team as a running back as a sophomore, junior and senior and was the conference’s offensive player of the year in 1984 and 1985. Selected to the first-team all-district team after his junior and senior years. In 1985, after his senior year, was selected an NAIA first-team All-American, an NAIA academic All-American and was Baker’s first Kodak All-American.
Established numerous University records and achieved significant recognition for his outstanding play:
Having the most 100-yard rushing games in a single season at Baker with nine…Having the most 200-yard rushing games in a career at Baker with four…Set the single season rushing record in 1985 with 1,775 yards — averaging 178.8 yards per game…Holds the Baker record for 19 games in which he rushed for 100 or more yards, including 12 straight games in which he gained 100 yards…Had 3 of the top 10 highest yardage games in University history…Carried the ball 522 times during career for a record 3,704 yards and an average of 7.1 yards per carry…Carried the ball 28 times and gained 306 yards against Missouri Valley on October 12, 1985. This established both a school record which still stands and an NAIA record at the time…was named the NAIA national offensive player of the week after that game…In 1985 was named the most valuable player of the Sunflower Bowl after breaking three bowl records for touchdowns, total rushing and total yards…
Has taught biology and physical education and coached on the high school level in Missouri at Jefferson City High School and Eldon for the past 14 years. While at Eldon, he was selected as the school’s district coach of the year in 1993. In 2004 was selected as the teacher of the year at Eldon High School.
Met his wife, the former Suzanne Stafford, fs ’88, in 1984. They have three children, Erin, Hayden, and Reagan
Attended Central High School in Kansas City. Participated in football and track, earning three letters in football and two in track. During summers through high school, played Ban Johnson League Baseball in Kansas City.
Enrolled at Baker in the fall of 1947 and became a starter late in his freshman season for the Wildcat football squad and Coach Karl Spear. During his four years at Baker played both guard and tackle on offense and nose guard and linebacker on defense. Lettered all four years at Baker and was selected as an honorable mention all-conference player and later, as a senior, as an all-conference team member.
Was named a member of Tom Harmon’s Little All-American Team and was invited, though declined, to attend the Los Angeles Rams’ Football Camp.
Graduated from Baker in 1952 with a degree in economics and a minor in business administration. On campus, was a member of the “B” Club and the Sigma Phi Epsilon fraternity, where he served as president for two years.
After graduation worked for the IBM Corporation for 18 years. During his career became one of IBM’s top-10 salesmen in the nation, won a national sales contest and served as a guest instructor at the National Sales School for new hires. Additionally during his career worked with Inland Office Products as a regional manager and later ROM Corporation as a product manager. Retired in 1993 but continues to work for ROM on special projects.
Joined the Leawood Kansas Fire Department as a volunteer fireman in 1964. Graduated from one of the first EMT classes and was certified in Johnson County. Served as the Leawood captain of the rescue squad for 15 years. His squad in 1982 was selected as the National Small Department Rescue Squad of the Year. Retired from the Leawood Fire Department in 1989 after 25 years of volunteer service.
Was elected to the City Council of Leawood in 1986 and served two terms.
Married classmate Frances (Ginger) Newman, who passed away in 1989. They had three sons, Kent, Kurt and Kyle.
Who has brought honor to Baker University through his outstanding athletic achievements as well as through his dedication to volunteerism in coaching youth league athletics.
Ed attended Jackson Heights High School in Holton, Kansas, where he was an all-state athlete in three sports. In addition to graduating as a member of the National Honor Society, he won all-state recognition as a running back and linebacker in football, as a point guard in basketball and in the 300-meter hurdles where he set a school record. He was also a member of the 4x100 meter relay team that set a Jackson Heights school record.
He was recruited to Baker in the fall of 1985 by Coach Charlie Richard. He set or tied 12 school records and was named the Offensive Player of the Game in the NAIA playoffs of 1986 against Huron College with 301 yards rushing. In 1987 he was the national NAIA scoring leader with 18 touchdowns, 108 points and an average of 13.5 points per game. His Baker records include:
most points in a half (30); most points in a career (306); rushing yards (4,492 yards); total yards in career (4,727); most 100-yard games in career (23); most 200 yard games in career (4); most rushing plays in a game (38); most rushing plays in a career (708); most touchdowns in a half (5); most touchdowns rushing in a half (5); most touchdowns rushing in a career (49); and most touchdowns in a career (51).
During his days at Baker he was not only successful in athletics but also as an active member of the campus where he served as a member of the Student Activities Committee and as a resident assistant. During his senior year he was voted both the Outstanding Senior Male and the Outstanding Baker Student. He was also an outstanding student in the classroom and was named an Academic All-American after his junior and senior years.
Following graduation he has worked in the field of electronic data as a computer programmer and systems analyst and as a software development supervisor. He is employed by Kansys Inc. as a telecommunications billing consultant.
He has been an active coach for youth league athletics where he has volunteered numerous hours coaching boys soccer, girls basketball, youth baseball and third-grade football.
He is married to his 1989 Baker classmate Nora Nuessle. Together they have three children, Kasey, Ryan and Shelby.
Special recognition is accorded to Thomas for his meritorious service to the University’s Athletic Hall of Fame. Their induction is the first for a husband and wife team.
Teresa was a multisport athlete in high school at Gridley, Kan., where she lettered in softball, volleyball, track and basketball. She was captain of the basketball team, was a drum majorette in the marching band, had a pitching record from eighth grade to her senior year of 100-10 and graduated as the class valedictorian. She was recruited to Baker in 1977 by Coach Emmalie Gessner Polen to play for the Wildcats, who began intercollegiate athletic competition for women the previous year.
During her Baker career she pitched the Wildcat softball team to a record of 75 wins and 29 losses with the team making state, regional and national playoffs in the AIAW. During her senior year she led the ‘Cats to a first-place finish in the regional tournament where she was named to the all-tournament team. The team finished ninth that year at the national tournament. Additionally, while at Baker she played intramural volleyball, slow-pitch softball, basketball and powder-puff football and was selected the off-campus candidate for homecoming queen.
Following Baker, Teresa earned a Master of Education in human biodynamics and gerontology from the University of Kansas and later developed “Young at Heart,” a senior adult exercise program that has received recognition from the State of Kansas. She has held numerous positions in industry and works with a federal agency, Federal Occupational Health, where she supports the work of 270 nursing centers and 40 fitness centers. She has been recognized for her work on a number of occasions.
Thomas was an all-League performer in football and basketball at Lansing (Kansas) High School. He was an honorable mention all-state selection in basketball his senior year.
He played and lettered in basketball from 1977 to 1981 at Baker as a defensive specialist and shot-blocker in a career that found him playing for four different head coaches. During his senior year, he was elected captain of the team. On campus he was a member of the Kappa Sigma fraternity, was a member of the Blue Key Honorary and was voted the Senior Greek Man of the Year.
Following graduation Tom joined his family’s business, the Young Sign Company, in Leavenworth and currently serves as its president. He continued to play and later coach competitive basketball where his teams have won 16 league championships since 1982. As an artist he has always enjoyed doing fine art and in that regard has been commissioned to illustrate all of the inductees of the Baker University Athletic Hall of Fame for their induction plaques since 1981. He has additionally been asked to produce portraits for various University plaques for the Jim Irick Tennis Courts, for Coach Emil Liston, Karl Spear and Charlie Richard.
Tom and Teresa were married in 1981. Together they have two sons, Clayton and Trevor. They continue to be active in their church, professional organizations and community where they have given thousands of hours to coaching youth league athletics in soccer, baseball and basketball.