Wally Hoops: A Slam Dunk Symposium

by Richard Paige

January 20, 2016

Since its inception, Crawfordsville and Wabash College have enjoyed a unique relationship with the game of basketball.

That relationship will be celebrated from a myriad of angles as the National Association of Wabash Men, Indianapolis Association of Wabash Men, faculty and staff of Wabash College present its seventh-annual symposium, Wally Hoops: A Slam Dunk Symposium on Basketball and the Liberal Arts, on Friday, Feb. 19.

This celebration will highlight the lessons learned though basketball. A total of 13 faculty and alumni from across the liberal arts spectrum will present on a multitude of topics all related to the game on the hardwood.

“While basketball wasn’t invented in Indiana, it may well have been,” said co-organizer Scott Benedict, ’98. “Basketball is part of the fabric of life in Indiana, especially in towns like Crawfordsville.  This symposium brings faculty, alumni, and staff together to explore the rich history and tradition of the game from a broad liberal arts perspective.”

.A reception and dinner in Detchon Center’s International Hall follow the afternoon of presentations on topics that include:  modern analytics and player evaluations, the role of sport psychology in the NBA, how basketball and the liberal arts illustrate life’s bigger lessons, team building and player development, Asia’s NBA love affair, the evolution of basketball’s rules, the first three decades of Wabash basketball, a “Hoosiers” experience hits close to home, management of an NCAA Division I basketball program, and artistic responses to the cultural phenomenon known as basketball.

Faculty members scheduled to present are Preston Bost (psychology); Richard Dallinger (chemistry emeritus); Mac Petty (head golf coach, basketball coach emeritus); David Phillips (chemistry emeritus) and Brent Harris (sports Information director); and Annie Strader and Matthew Weedman (Art). They will be joined by alumni presenters Joe Haklin ’73, Ray Jovanovich ’84, Mike Ricks ’87, and Matt Tanney ’05. Dr. Chris Carr ’82, will deliver the event’s keynote, “Mental Toughness: The Role of Sport Psychology in the NBA,” following dinner.

After a brief tip-off and welcome at 12:50 p.m., presentations begin at 1 p.m. in Hays Hall rooms 104 and 319, and will run simultaneously. The cash-bar reception begins at 5:30 p.m. and an RSVP-only dinner will follow at 6:30 p.m. Attendees who register for the symposium dinner will receive a Wally Hoops-themed gift.

In conjunction with Wally Hoops, the Wabash College Archives has created a display on the first floor of the Lilly Library celebrating the impact of the game locally. The display covers such topics as the arrival of the game in Crawfordsville in 1892, the reincarnation of Chadwick Court by 1922 National Championship team member Shang Chadwick; legendary coach Ward “Piggy” Lambert ’11 learns the game in Crawfordsville, Wabash’s 1982 National Championship team, and a presentation of Wabash’s “Wonder Fives.”

Visit www.wabash.edu/alumni/fas for more information about the symposium. The afternoon sessions and reception are free and open to the public. The Wally Hoops dinner is $25 (pre-registration required). To respond, simply call Michele Ward at (765) 361-6369 or email her at wardm@wabash.edu. Visa, MasterCard, American Express, and Discover are accepted.

The alumni, faculty, and staff symposium is an alumni initiative in partnership with the faculty and staff of Wabash College. Its main purpose is to strengthen the important relationships that exist between and among them.

Look for the event on Twitter: #WallyHoops.


Wabash College • P.O. Box 352 • Crawfordsville, IN 47933 • 765.361.6100