Jerry Jones
Jerry Jones
Year: Legacy Class '17
Team: Athletic Director at Kansas Wesleyan University; Board Member

Ol' Coach Jones grew up the tiny hamlet of Vermillion, KS, where he earned 14 varsity letters at the Rural High School.  Greatly influenced by his high school coach and the local Minister, Jones attended Baker University for two years, then entered the Marine Corps for four years, before returning to Baker.  There is no truth to the story that he was awarded "S" for sympathy rather than the "B" for Baker letters in football, basketball and golf, although it is true he never started a game. 

He enjoyed a labor of love for 42 years as an educator teaching English and coaching 18 years at Kansas high schools before moving to coach college basketball at Kansas Wesleyan University and Indiana University at South Bend.

It would seem that the old coach didn't do too badly setting records for winning the most games at KWU and IUSB earning two Coach of the Year awards and championships in the Kansas Conference.   His 2000 team won the NSCAA National Championship which earned him a trio of special honors – 2000 Heart of America Sports Camps Coach of the Year, 2000 NSCAA Coach of the Year and the right to coach The NSCAA All-American Team traveling through Japan on an all-expenses paid tour where they won 10 of 11 games.

After retirement in 2006, honors began to pour in for Jones:

  • Educational Wall of Fame, Baker University,      2007
  • Athletic Hall of Fame, Kansas Wesleyan University, 2008
  • Athletic Hall of Fame, Baker University, 2013

During Jones's time as Athletic Director, Kansas Wesleyan won NSCAA National Championships in women's volleyball, women's basketball, women's cross-country, soccer, baseball and basketball.  Credit for these achievements go to the teams and their coaches:  Tom Hughes, women's volleyball and basketball; John Pickens, cross-country; Brian Berner and Mike Dibinni, soccer; Tim Bellew and Steve Bartow, baseball. 

He has served on the Presidential Cabinet of Advisors at Kansas Wesleyan, and on the NSCAA Board of Directors as the organization began to transform into the United States Collegiate Athletic Association.

Lately Ol' Coach Jones has been known as Ol' Jones, Kansas State Champion, 2016, Cowboy Poet; and more importantly, husband of Dr. Kathleen Barrett-Jones, whose distinguished service at Kansas Wesleyan, earned recognition of the former Director of Education and Academic Dean for her outstanding leadership, inspiring abilities and commitment to student success.  Their daughter, Jessica, lives on Manhattan Island, New York City.