Arlon Beadles earned 200th win in 2012-13
Three colleagues extol tributes for Lady Lions coach
WAXAHACHIE, Texas -- One of the biggest sports headlines at Southwestern Assemblies of God University this past school year was the coaching milestone of Arlon Beadles.
The veteran women’s basketball coach, who recently finished his eighth season at the helm of the Lady Lions, won his 100th game at SAGU and 200th since he began coaching women.
Both were achieved on the same night when SAGU routed Dallas Christian College in Richardson, 79-39, just days after Thanksgiving 2012.
Coach Beadles, who could have a new, talented squad this fall, should end a brief two-year span under .500. The previous three squads produced the best three seasons in SAGU history.
They rolled to 25-8, 24-8 and 23-13 campaigns in 2009, 2010 and 2011.
In that duration they played in the NAIA national tournament (’10), knocked off an NCAA Division I team and finished No. 3 in the nation in the National Christian College Athletic Association (NCCAA) tourney.
Through it all, Coach Beadles’ steady, guiding hand has been a constant.
His coaching strategies have changed over the years, though he has found a zone defensive scheme that has proven incredibly effective.
In 2009 SAGU players bought in and held opposing shooters to .303 accuracy – the best in the country, along with permitting only 49.6 points per game, second nationally.
Emphasizing quickness and traps with three guards and active forwards, the team has ranked in the Top 20 in the country in field goal defense, scoring defense, steals and blocked shots in four of the past five seasons.
A seasoned veteran, his strength has been his firm gentleman’s approach, which often is marked by maximum production by players. And Beadles’ schematic skills have been recognized by others.
His abilities bring to mind the legendary quote of Bum Phillips, the former Head Coach of the Houston Oilers, who praised Don Shula, the Miami Dolphins Head Coach and Hall of Fame inductee: "He can take his'n and beat your'n, and he can take your'n and beat his'n."
In fact, here are the words of three college coaches who know Beadles well:
Dr. JERRY BOONE
“Coach Beadles is a great example of hard work and integrity in coaching. Congratulations, my friend.” – Dr. Jerry Boone, former SAGU Men’s Basketball Coach and Athletic Director.
Beadles and Boone came to SAGU at the same time after years of coaching together at Emmanuel College, in Franklin Springs, Georgia.
Presently, Boone and his wife Glenda are professors at North Greenville University in Tigerville, South Carolina.
Also the Lions, EC, like SAGU, is a Division I member in the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA).
“Tell Coach Beadles congrats for me. I can’t say enough about how well he prepared his teams and how much he got out of the players he had,” said Jerome Willis.
He was the coach at Langston University (Ok), who won the Red River Athletic Conference six consecutive years.
SAGU was their nemesis, and once broke Langston’s four-year unbeaten home record with a 71-61 win on February 8, 2010.
“As a coach I looked up to how he could take a team that was clearly not as talented on paper as say my teams were,” Willis continued, “and get them not to only believe they could win, but accomplish it.”
“His teams play that zone so well that when I changed jobs (Willis is now at the Univ. of Texas at Permian Basin) he was the first person I called to get information on how he coaches his zone defense. Like always he was there to help me.”
“Outside of basketball,” Willis (pictured above, left) pointed out, “he is one of the best men I know and have had the pleasure to be around.”
This past winter, in his first season in Odessa, Texas, Willis took the UTPB Falcons to a 21-8 record and the (NCAA Division II) Heartland Conference championship.
Another rival coach, Ronnie Howell, of LSU-Shreveport, had similar things to say about Beadles.
“I told my team before we came over to (play at SAGU this past season) they will always play with a lot of passion and poise,”said Howell.
“Coach Beadles gets the most out of his players and they are fundamentally sound in every aspect of the game. They run their offense until they get the shot they want and (his players) read defenses very well. Their zone defense is something you always have to prepare extra for.”
“Since the first time I met Coach Beadles when he got the job at SAGU, he has always been very nice and cordial and I consider him a true friend in the coach's world.”
Howell’s Lady Pilots went 25-6 this year, again qualifying for the NAIA national tournament. LSUS was 25-9 the year before (2012). In the last five seasons his teams have one 117-41 (.741).
“You can tell when you talk to him and watch him coach, he still has that compassion, love, and fire to coach! He is a true teacher of the game but more importantly he is one of the finest men I have ever met."
He concluded: “Congrats Coach Beadles! May you have many more wins in the future.”
Beadles (beed-lz) has been recognized seven times for his coaching prowess, six of them by the NCCAA – which is a mix of around 120 NCAA Division 2, D3 and NAIA schools.
He was selected Coach of the Year in the South Region three times; 1999-2000, 2000-2001 and 2003-2004, all while at Emmanuel College.
He matched the feat while in the Central Region at SAGU, in; 2008-2009, 2009-2010, and 2010-2011.
The Red River Athletic Conference paid tribute to Beadles as its Coach of the Year in the 2008-2009 season.
SAGU has had four winning seasons since the sport joined the NAIA in the late 1990’s. Coach Beadles was on the sideline for three of them, while Robbie Shay - currently at Bacone College - led the Lady Lions to their first.
His career at colleges has generally been at locations where he was asked to rebuild programs.
His career mark as a women’s coach is 206-241. At SAGU he has racked up a 106-141 ledger.
After the milestone 200th triumph, SAGU honored Coach Beadles with a special luncheon where he was presented with a commemorative plaque.
While coaching men’s college hoops, Beadles was inducted in the Hall of Fame at Southwestern Christian University in Bethany, Oklahoma. He coached the Eagles there from 1966-1974.
This past year he traveled 90 miles northeast of Atlanta to Franklin Springs, Georgia, where Emmanuel College named the lobby of their new sports complex after him.
Giving credit where it is due (Romans 13:7) is a mark of secure leaders who recognize the proven performance of others. And praiseworthy is a common response to Arlon Beadles.
Contact: Mark “Link” Warde, SAGU Sports Information Director, at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 469-658-2847.
BIO: Coach Arlon G. Beadles
Birthplace: Sulphur Springs, Tx
High School: Southwestern H.S., Oklahoma City, Ok
Athletic Career (high points): College basketball, team MVP three times
College & Major: Southern Nazarene University, Physical Education
Wife's Name: Mary
Children / Vocation: Greg (Atlanta Falcons, Vice President), Traci (Elementary Teacher), Adam (Physical Therapist)
Number of Grandchildren: Nine.
Levels of Basketball You Have Coached: JrHi, SrHi, Junior College, four-year universities
How Many Years Coaching Men: 29.
How Many Years Coaching Women: 13.
Favorite Sports Movie: Hoosiers (1986).
Favorite Sports Book: Be Quick, but Don’t Hurry, by Andrew Hill with Coach John Wooden.
Favorite Author: Mark Batterson of Washington D.C.
Favorite Book / Author: In a Pit with a Lion on a Snowy Day by Mark Batterson.
Favorite Motto that is related to coaching: “You Can Count on Me” (Philippians 4:13)
Coaches You'd Call a Mentor: Bill White (Oral Roberts University), Abe Lemons (Oklahoma City University, Univ. of Texas)
If You Weren't Coaching, What would your Vocation be? Cattleman, Rancher
Countries Traveled to: Argentina, Canada, England, Mexico, Mozambique, South Africa, Tanzania, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.