Coach Sutton Bio
"Born to Be A Cowboy"
Eddie Sutton, Age 3
Born on a farm in Bucklin, Kansas on March 12, 1936, Eddie Eugene Sutton left Kansas after high school to play basketball for Coach Henry Iba at Oklahoma A&M. After college he found his way to national recognition through basketball, with coaching endeavors at Tulsa’s Central High School, College of Idaho, Creighton University, University of Arkansas, University of Kentucky, and Oklahoma State University. But, as outstanding as his accomplishments in basketball were, his life encompassed far more. He brought the same desire for challenge and intense drive to succeed from the world of basketball to his roles as husband, parent, grandparent, and community leader. In addition to coaching and family, community life was important to Eddie. He regularly supported and lent his growing celebrity to causes he deemed important. Among other charitable endeavors, he supported Big Brothers & Big Sisters for many years, regularly promoted Coaches vs. Cancer and, always, supported the Remember the Ten Run at OSU. Eddie was a member of First United Methodist Church in Stillwater, OK, and Life Church in South Tulsa, as well as a member of Sigma Chi fraternity, designated a Significant Sig.
Most writings about Eddie’s life have focused on his accomplishments in coaching. What many people may not know is how deeply he cared for his family. He was preceded in death by his wife, Patsy Wright Sutton, and is survived by his children, Stephen and Robin Sutton; Sean and Trena Sutton; Scott and Kim Sutton, along with grandchildren Stephen, Catherine and Caroline; Hunter, Spencer, and Parker; and Hallie, Lauren, and Maggie. Someone who knew him well recently remarked, “I’ve never seen anyone love his family so fiercely.”
Eddie considered his players a part of his family, and he cared deeply that they achieve the higher education that their scholarships provided. He did not merely encourage them to complete their degrees, he made it a priority to see that they learned the discipline to study and to attend class regularly, right along with the discipline of practice. As one former player recalled, “He drove me the same way (he did in basketball) in my academics.. His players recall, “You could tell he wanted the best for you”; “He became a father figure”; “On the floor and off the floor, he made me a better player, a better man. He made me a better husband.”In the end, like his own mentor, Henry Iba, Eddie Sutton was a man who commanded respect but earned enduring love and loyalty from family, players, friends, and many fans.