Former Kennard and Madisonville basketball coach Johnny Carter has been inducted into the Texas Association of Basketball Coaches' Hall of Fame.
Carter was honored on Saturday, May 17 at the El Tropicano Hotel in San Antonio along with five others in the 2014 TABC class.
The 38-year veteran coach began his career at Kennard High School in 1967. In four years there, his teams compiled a record of 160-13, winning three state championships in 1967, 1968 and 1970.
"I tried to thank as many as people as I could that had helped me along the way. I talked about the Kennard teams, particularly the one I wrote about in my book," Carter said of his speech during the induction banquet.
Carter's first season at Kennard sparked his book- "The First Season: The True Story of How a Rookie Coach Took a Newly Integrated Team to a Texas State Championship." An updated version of his book includes his Hall of Fame induction and photos of his first book signing held at the school. A limited number of copies are available at the Kennard school library.
"When I went to Kennard, I was just hoping we could win more than we lost. I had no idea what was going to happen. I think the Good Lord intended for me to be there. Nobody wanted that job back then. I got the job in August, so I got there just a few days before school started," he recalled.
Carter found out a year ago that he was going to be a member of the Texas High School Basketball Hall of Fame's Class of 2014. He was selling his books during last year's coaching clinic when a member of the selection committee approached Carter and asked to speak to him. The man extended his hand and said "Congratulations."
Carter asked, "For what?" and the man replied, "We just voted you into the Texas High School Basketball Hall of Fame."
"I was in shock for two or three days," said the new Hall of Fame member.
Carter spent the final 22 years of his coaching career at Madisonville, where he led the Mustangs to the playoffs several times, including the 1994-95 Class 3A state championship game. Madisonville was 34-4 that season and won District 18-3A before picking up four playoffs wins to advance to the state championship for the first time since 1951-52.
Carter was head coach at McLennan Community College in Waco, for seven years, finishing second in the conference in his first season in 1974. Thereafter, his teams won six consecutive conference championships. They qualified for the Regional Tournament every year, reaching the National Junior College Tournament in 1976. He was voted Junior College Coach of the Year by the Texas Association of Basketball Coaches that season. In 1980, his team was the winner of the highest scoring game in the history of basketball: 169—165 against Kilgore. The game ball is in the trophy case at the National Basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield, Massachusetts.
He coached two players at MCC who went on to the NBA: Vinnie "The Microwave" Johnson and Sam Worthen. Vinnie, the seventh player taken in the draft, played on two NBA championship teams for the Detroit Pistons in 1989 and 1990.
Joining Carter on the Hall of Fame 2014 Class are former Collinsville basketball star Juvean McWhorter Snell; the late Tyrone Johnson (player/coach, Austin High and Austin Anderson); Boyce Honea (coach, Houston Milby); Peggy Hosek (coach, Poth); and Wayne Dickey (coach, San Antonio Sam Houston).