PLAINVIEW, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) — Officials with Wayland Baptist University announced that longtime college basketball coach, Rick Cooper, is set to be recognized as a 2022 Distinguished Alumni Award winner at a banquet at 6 p.m. Feb. 17 as part of the WBU Homecoming celebration at the Plainview campus, located at 1900 W. 7th St.

Officials detailed that Cooper earned a bachelor’s in science from Wayland in 1981 and went on to play for the Pioneer Basketball team. In addition, Cooper earned a graduate degree in education in 1985 from Wayland and served as an assistant coach for the Pioneers as he helped lead the team to the NAIA National Tournament in 1985.

Cooper moved into the head coach position at Wayland in 1987 and went on to coach the West Texas A&M University Buffaloes in 1993. Cooper lead the Buffs to four conference championships, according to officials, and earned six conference Coach of the Year honors.

Officials noted that Cooper is currently the Chief of Staff for Texas Tech University’s men’s basketball team.

“Rick Cooper’s history is so intricately woven into Wayland’s history, and he has left a legacy as a player, coach and athletic director,” said Jeffrey Vera, director of Alumni Relations. “His coaching career has impacted countless athletes through the decades, and he continues to influence students. We are proud he is part of the Wayland family and proud to add more honor to his collection.”

Officials said that the banquet is open to the public for $15 which will include a dinner.

Visit the university’s website for more information on WBU’s homecoming week activities or contact 806-291-3600.

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