January 8, 1930|
|Died||May 10, 2015
|Coaching career (HC unless noted)|
|Head coaching record|
|Accomplishments and honors|
12 SWAC Championships
|College Basketball Hall of Fame
Inducted in 2010
Davey L. 'Wiz' Whitney (January 8, 1930 – May 10, 2015) was an American college basketball coach and the head basketball coach at Texas Southern University from 1964 to 1969 and Alcorn State University from 1969 to 1989 and 1996 to 2003. He amassed a total record of 566 wins and 356 losses in 33 years of coaching at these institutions.
Whitley was born in Midway, Kentucky. He attended Kentucky State University in Frankfort, Kentucky, graduating in 1953. After college, Whitney started out playing in the Negro American League for two years before starting career in coaching.
Whitney started out coaching high school basketball in his home state in the early 1960s before moving on to his first collegiate job at coaching the Texas Southern University Tigers in 1964. He didn't fare well during his five years there. In 1969 he moved on to Alcorn State University, which had the reputation as a football school in the Southwestern Athletic Conference (SWAC).
Whitney was instrumental in making the Alcorn State men's basketball program a force in the SWAC during the 1970s through 1990s, winning 10 conference titles. He led the Braves to the 1979 National Invitational Tournament and upset Mississippi State University in the first round In 1980, Alcorn State became the first HBCU to win a game in the NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Championship Tournament, defeating University of South Alabama in the first round. During his time at Alcorn, Whitney earned the nickname, 'Wiz'.
By the end of his career at Alcorn, Whitney has set many records, and set himself to be the second winningest coach in HBCU college basketball behind the late Clarence 'Big House' Gaines, who coached at Winston-Salem State University. The Davey Whitney Complex, a 7,000-seat multi-purpose arena built in 1975, is home to the Alcorn State University Braves basketball team, was named after Coach Whitney.
He was inducted into the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame in 2010.
- Johnson, Raphielle (May 10, 2015). "Former Alcorn State head coach Davey L. Whitney Sr. dies at 85". NBC Sports. Retrieved May 10, 2015.