|Organization:||Temple University (PA)|
In 46 years as the Temple Owls' head baseball coach, Skip Wilson led his teams to 10 conference championships, 14 NCAA Tournaments, and two College World Series appearances. His 1,034 wins are the most of any coach in Temple history, regardless of sport.
A Philadelphia native, Wilson was a three-sport star at St. John's High School in Manayunk. His success in football, basketball and baseball awarded him the city's Most Outstanding Athlete Award. Wilson graduated in 1948.
Wilson then enrolled at Georgetown on a basketball scholarship. He left the school after his second year to play baseball in the Philadelphia Athletics farm system.
In 1951, Wilson quit professional baseball and enrolled at Temple. His studies were interrupted by a two-year service in the Army. Wilson graduated in 1958 and obtained his master's degree in health and physical education from Temple in 1961. He put his teaching success to work, teaching for 34 years at Roxborough High School.
Wilson began his coaching career at Temple in 1958 as the freshman basketball coach. He coached the team through the 1970-71 season. He became the baseball coach in 1960 after serving as an assistant for one season.
In the 1960s, Wilson guided the Owls to nine winning seasons, including NCAA Tournament appearances in 1962 and 1968. The program took flight in 1972, when the Owls won the Mid-Atlantic Conference and went on to place third at the College World Series. Between 1972 and 1984, Wilson coached the Owls to nine conference championships and NCAA Tournament appearances. The Owls reached their second College World Series in 1978.
Wilson was inducted into the Temple Athletics Hall of Fame in 1981. He is also enshrined in the Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame.
Although the program only had one winning season after 1989, it had one last hurrah in 2001. The Owls dropped their first 14 games, but recovered to win the Atlantic Ten Conference Championship. The team also made the NCAA tournament, Wilson's last.
Over 100 of Wilson's players signed professional contracts. Five went on to play in the Major Leagues.