Kokomo High School
|Kokomo High School|
|2501 S Berkley
Kokomo, Indiana, Howard County 46902
|Type||Public high school|
|School district||Kokomo School Corporation|
|Athletics conference||North Central|
Kokomo High School (merged with Haworth High School in 1984) is a four-year public high school in Kokomo, Indiana. The school is the only high school in the Kokomo-Center Township Consolidated School Corporation.
The earliest Kokomo High School found in records was in existence from about 1872 to 1916. The construction of the original Kokomo High School started in 1870 on the corner of Armstrong and Taylor with the first class commencing in 1872 according to a newspaper of that time. In 1898 the original High School burned down and a second building was built on the corner of Market and Sycamore. In 1914 the High School was again destroyed by fire. The third campus of Kokomo High School, first known as Howard County's Central School Building, was dedicated on October 19, 1917. Located at 303 East Superior Street, this building now houses Central Middle School.
The current campus of Kokomo High School was built in 1968 Previously, the downtown campus was known as Kokomo High School and the south campus was named Haworth High School. However, in 1983 the Kokomo-Center Township Board of Trustees decided that two high schools were no longer necessary. Consequently, in 1984 Haworth High School was closed and the former Haworth students began attending Kokomo High School. After the reorganization, Kokomo High School was split into two campuses. The downtown campus had 8th and 9th grade students, and the south campus (the former Haworth High School) had 10th, 11th, and 12th graders. After the south campus was expanded, the south campus became the primary location and served 9th to 12th grade students. The downtown campus later became Central Middle School in 1998.
Kokomo High School still has visible reminders of the building's history, including a framed portrait of C.V. Haworth and a case featuring Haworth's mascot, the Haworth Huskies. The C.V. Haworth award is also given to Seniors who show "exceptional ability in writing and speaking". The C.V. Haworth Memorial Scholarship Fund is available to capable seniors from Kokomo High School who are entering a bachelor's degree program at Indiana University at either the Kokomo or Bloomington campuses.
(sung to the tune of On, Wisconsin)
Onward Kokomo Onward Kokomo Dear old red and blue We your sons and daughters love you our loyalty is true
Onward Kokomo Onward Kokomo We'll Fight for your fame! Fight, fellows, fight, fight, fight! Win this Game!
K-K-K-O-K O-O-O-M-O K-O-K O-M-O
Go Kokomo Go!
Kokomo High School has one of the most prestigious programs throughout the entire history of Indiana High School Basketball. The Wildkats (spelled uniquely with a "k") have won one boys' state championship. This came in 1961 in a thrilling 68-66 overtime win against Indianapolis Manual, capping a 28-1 season. The girls' team has featured even more success with three state championships in 1992, 1993, and 2003. They came close to a 3-peat in 1994, falling to Lake Central 44-42 in the championship game after holding a 10-point fourth quarter lead.
To go with the championships, the Wildkats also appeared in the "Final 4" in 1925, 1941, 1944, 1959, 1962, 1989, and 2015. In 1925, 1944, 1959,1989, and 2011 they finished as state runner-up. The 1997 appearance was celebrated as part of the last true Indiana High School Basketball State Tournament before the class-division realignment beginning in the 1997-1998 season, which divides schools into four separate classes by enrollment. Kokomo's girls' team also has final 4 appearances in 1996, 1999, 2001, 2005, and 2006 to go with their 3 championships. The girls' team is regarded as one of the top programs in the state of Indiana year-in and year-out.[by whom?] The 1993 squad featured four Indiana All-Stars in its starting line-up, and was ranked #1 in the Nation by USA Today for two weeks. The 2003 Girls' team also featured the first undefeated season by a Kokomo basketball team, boys or girls, in school history. They accomplished feat in the same season that KHS celebrated the 100th anniversary of the first team being fielded in 1903.
Kokomo has had two players named "Mr. Basketball" in the state of Indiana. The award is given to the top 12th grade player in the state of Indiana for that specific season. Kokomo's Tom Schwartz won the award in 1944, and Jimmy Rayl won the award in 1959.
KHS holds the state record with 69 sectional championships in the 97 years of the IHSAA state tournament, and they have only once had a drought of at least 4 year between titles. The Wildkats have also won 33 regional championships, 7 Semi-State championships, and 14 North Central Conference titles. The North Central Conference is generally regarded as the toughest high school basketball conference in the state[by whom?], if not the whole country. It has been dubbed "The Conference of Champions" as conference members have won 30 Indiana High school Boys' basketball state championships, including Muncie Central (8) and Marion (7), who are ranked 1-2 in total championships by school in state history. The conference also has numerous runner-up and final four appearances as well. Nine state championship games have featured two NCC teams at the same time, by far the most of any conference in the state. This was capped in 1952 when the NCC, a 10 school conference at the time, went a perfect 50-0 against teams outside the conference in the state tournament. All 10 teams won sectionals that year, and each was defeated by another member school until the State Championship game, which featured Muncie Central defeating fellow NCC foe Indianapolis Tech 68-49.
Kokomo's girls' basketball team has more than its own share of success, and indeed can be considered more successful than the boys' program.[by whom?] In the 31-year history of the girls' IHSAA tournament, Kokomo has won 19 (tied 3rd all-time) sectionals, 12 (1st all-time) regionals, and 5 (second all-time) semi-states, and has won 3 state titles (Second all-time, but it should be noted that Ft. Wayne Luers' 5 championships have all come since the change to class sports). The Lady Wildkats have also won 12 North Central Conference championships (1st all-time), all since 1991. Under coach Charlie Hall (1997-8 season through 2003-04 season, plus the 2005-06 season) the Wildkats compiled an astounding 54-1 record against North Central Conference opponents on their way to winning the Conference championship all 8 seasons.
The program has been the subject of at least five books. One, "Yea Wildcats," was a fictional work of art written in the 1960s. The last book, "Kats with a K," was a historical book highlighting the first 100-years of the Kokomo Wildkat basketball program, and was written by KHS graduate Dean Hockney, a local sports editor.
Campus additions and programs
Kokomo High School occupies the original two-story building and the two expansions. KHS is also linked on to the Kokomo Area Career Center (KACC), a nationally acclaimed program. Kokomo High School also has many athletic facilities. The campus features two indoor gymnasiums, a swimming and diving pool, four soccer fields, a football/track stadiums, ten tennis courts, two softball diamonds and one baseball diamond. The high school competes in the North Central Conference for athletics. Construction began on the school after the end of the 2006-2007 term.
Kokomo High School receives government dollars to add unique amenities to the campus such as plasma screen televisions in the foyer, and an outdoor locker room for track and football. These features have been met with some criticism, as art and music programs have been cut to fund to athletic endeavors. However, the athletic teams are positive resource for the school, and the community, and many praise the school administration for their innovation.
- Art Club
- Best Buddies
- Boys Legion
- Chemistry Club
- Diversity Club
- Environmental Club
- Entrepreneurship Club
- Film Club
- Forensics (Speech and Debate)
- French Club
- German Club
- Girls League
- Latin Club
- Key Club
- Math Club
- National Honor Society
- Red and Blue Newspaper
- Sargasso (Yearbook)
- Step-Up (formerly SADD)
- Spanish Club
- Student Council
- Thespians (Drama)
- TechnoKats (Technological)
Fall: Cheerleading, Cross Country, Soccer, Boys Tennis, Girls Golf, Boys Football, Girls Volleyball
Winter: Cheerleading, Basketball, Swimming, Boys Wrestling
Spring: Baseball, Softball, Track and Field, Boys Golf, Girls Tennis
- Cliff Barker, 1948 Olympic Gold Medal winner (basketball)
- Rupert Boneham, competitor on the reality TV show Survivor, graduated from Haworth High School (not Kokomo High School alumnus).
- Norman Bridwell, author of Clifford the Big Red Dog
- Steve Kroft, correspondent for 60 Minutes attended Kokomo High School.
- Jim "Goose" Ligon, Basketball player
- Jimmy Rayl, Indiana high school Mr. Basketball, Trester Award Winner, Indiana University record-holder and collegiate All-American, Indiana Pacer.
- Nolan Sanburn, professional baseball player
- Joe Thatcher, current MLB pitcher for the Cleveland Indians. Former pitcher for the Houston Astros, Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, Arizona Diamondbacks and San Diego Padres.
- Pat Underwood, high school All-American baseball player, taken #2 in Major League Baseball draft in 1976 by the Detroit Tigers.
- Tom Underwood, former Major League Baseball player for multiple baseball teams including the Toronto Blue Jays and St. Louis Cardinals.
- Brandon Wood, professional basketball player.
- Don Pardee Moon, Rear Admiral in the U.S. Navy during World War II at Normandy's Utah Beach in 1944
- "IHSAA Girls' Basketball State Champions". ihsaa.org. Retrieved February 22, 2016.
- Sigler, Josh (April 5, 2013). "Sanburn's season delayed by minor shoulder injury". Kokomo Tribune. Retrieved August 31, 2014.