Professional golfer and coach Labron Harris, who founded the intercollegiate golf program at Oklahoma A&M (later Oklahoma State University), was born November 26, 1908, in Dardanelle, Arkansas, and moved to Wewoka, Oklahoma, at age eight. He graduated from Wewoka High School in 1927, having lettered in basketball, baseball, track, tennis and football. Harris then attended Southwestern State College in Weatherford, wrestling in the first match he ever saw. He also competed in golf, winning the Oklahoma Collegiate Conference individual title, and graduated in 1935.
Beginning in 1936 Harris won three consecutive Oklahoma Sand Greens Championships. Also in 1936 he became the head professional at Guthrie Country Club. In 1947 Henry P. Iba hired Harris as golf coach at Oklahoma A&M, where he coached the Cowboys to twenty-four conference titles and one National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Championship (1963). He taught twenty-seven All-American selections, one of whom, Mike Holder, succeeded him as OSU golf coach in 1973. Harris also captured the 1953 Oklahoma Open in Enid and tied for twenty-seventh at the 1958 U.S. Open. He won 152 tournaments as a player. His son, Labron Harris, Jr., won the 1962 U.S. Amateur Championship. Harris, Sr., designed the Lakeside Memorial Golf Course in Stillwater. He retired to Sun City, Arizona, and died on August 14, 1995. He was honored with induction into the Golf Coaches Association of America Hall of Fame and the Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame.
BIBLIOGRAPHY: John Paul Bischoff, Mr. Iba: Basketball's Aggie Iron Duke (Oklahoma City, Okla.: Oklahoma Heritage Association, 1980). Del Lemon, The Story of Golf in Oklahoma (Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 2001). Oklahoma State University Golf Media Guide (Stillwater: Oklahoma State University, 1997-98).
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