Doc Sadler to be inducted in Arkansas-Fort Smith Hall of Fame on Sunday
HATTIESBURG, Miss. -- Southern Miss head men's basketball coach Doc Sadler will be inducted into the University of Arkansas-Fort Smith Athletics Hall of Fame on Sunday.
"It's an honor," Sadler said. "These kinds of things are a reflection of how lucky I've been to work with some of the best people and also have staff and players that have also been very successful."
Sadler, a Greenwood native, honed his coaching skills in his native state, as he served as a head coach in the junior college ranks for five years at Arkansas-Fort Smith from 1999 to 2003. Sadler posted a 120-39 record at the school, the beginning of his future successes as a head coach.
He served two stints as an assistant coach at Arkansas-Fort Smith, first in 1988-91 and then again during the 1997-98 season. He took over as head coach and athletic director in 1998 and served in that capacity until 2003 when he left to become an assistant and later head coach at UTEP. The school changed its name from Westark College to UAFS in 2002.
Sadler's teams won the Bi-State East Conference title each of his last four years at Arkansas-Fort Smith. The 2001 and 2002 NJCAA Region II Coach of the Year, Sadler led the Lions to the region title and an appearance in the NJCAA Tournament while winning 30 games each of those seasons. Off the court, his teams had a 95-percent graduation rate during his tenure and every sophomore over his last two seasons at UAFS was awarded a scholarship to a four-year institution, including eight Division I scholarships.
"Doc Sadler is a UAFS icon," athletic director Curtis Janz said. "His influence resonates through our athletic department as much today as it did when he coached here. The culture of excellence and caring that he developed at then-Westark is still the culture we strive for today."
Sadler in March concluded his fourth season at Southern Miss, helping the team to its most wins since the 2011-12 season and a C-USA semifinal appearance. The Golden Eagles have also improved their league win total in each season he has been at the helm.