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Wilbur Neil "Sparky" Stalcup (February 13, 1910 – April 21, 1972) was an American basketball coach and college athletics administrator. He served as the head basketball coach at Northwest Missouri State Teacher's College—now known as Northwest Missouri State University—from 1933 to 1943 and the University of Missouri from 1946 to 1962, compiling a career college basketball record of 332–236. Stalcup was also the athletic director at Missouri from 1971 until his death in 1972.

Wilbur Stalcup
Wilbur Stalcup.jpg
Stalcup, c. 1952
Biographical details
Born(1910-02-13)February 13, 1910
DiedApril 21, 1972(1972-04-21) (aged 62)
Columbia, Missouri
Playing career
1928–1932Northwest Missouri State
Coaching career (HC unless noted)
1933–1943Northwest Missouri State
Administrative career (AD unless noted)
Head coaching record
Accomplishments and honors
MIAA regular season (1940)

Early life and playing careerEdit

Stalcup grew up in Oregon, Missouri, where he played for the 1928 team that won the Missouri State High School championship at a time when there were no size divisions for high school basketball. The Oregon team made it to the quarterfinals of the National Interscholastic Basketball Tournament at the University of Chicago.[1] During the run Oregon did not have a gymnasium and practiced on an outdoor court and occasionally inside a Methodist church. There were only 10 people from the school body of 100 who played.[2]

Stalcup attended Northwest Missouri State Teacher's College and played for Henry Iba. He was a member of Iba's 1932 team that lost a title game in the Amateur Athletic Union national championship, the only national championship basketball appearance by Northwest Missouri State.

Coaching careerEdit

Northwest Missouri StateEdit

Stalcup at 138–57 is second only to Iba in the school's won-loss percentage. His only MIAA championship was in 1939–40 when his team was 17–0 in conference play and 20–1 overall. His teams had winning records in eight of his nine seasons.[3]


Following a hiatus on basketball during World War II, Stalcup moved to Missouri. He compiled a 194–179 record at Missouri. His team won no conference championships, although they did win two Big Seven Holiday Tournaments. Among his players was Norm Stewart. He had the most wins in the school history until Stewart eclipsed him. He was president of the National Association of Basketball Coaches in 1961–62. He was color commentator on basketball broadcasts after leaving coaching and was the athletic director at the university when he died.[4] The Stalcup Room in the Mizzou Arena is named for him.

Head coaching recordEdit


Season Team Overall Conference Standing Postseason
Northwest Missouri State Bearcats (Missouri Intercollegiate Athletic Association) (1933–1943)
1933–34 Northwest Missouri State 8–6
1934–35 Northwest Missouri State 10–8
1935–36 Northwest Missouri State 11–7
1936–37 Northwest Missouri State 13–4
1937–38 Northwest Missouri State 15–6
1938–39 Northwest Missouri State 11–7
1939–40 Northwest Missouri State 20–1 1st
1940–41 Northwest Missouri State 18–5
1941–42 Northwest Missouri State 14–6
1942–43 Northwest Missouri State 18–7
Northwest Missouri State: 138–57
Missouri Tigers (Big Six / Big Seven / Big Eight Conference) (1946–1962)
1946–47 Missouri 15–10 6–4 2nd
1947–48 Missouri 14–10 7–5 T–2nd
1948–49 Missouri 11–13 6–6 4th
1949–50 Missouri 14–10 4–8 6th
1950–51 Missouri 16–8 8–4 T–2nd
1951–52 Missouri 14–10 6–6 3rd
1952–53 Missouri 11–9 6–6 3rd
1953–54 Missouri 11–10 6–6 3rd
1954–55 Missouri 16–5 9–3 2nd
1955–56 Missouri 15–7 8–4 T–2nd
1956–57 Missouri 10–13 4–8 6th
1957–58 Missouri 9–13 3–9 T–6th
1958–59 Missouri 6–19 3–11 8th
1959–60 Missouri 12–13 5–9 6th
1960–61 Missouri 11–13 7–7 4th
1961–62 Missouri 9–16 3–11 T–7th
Missouri: 194–179 91–107
Total: 332–236

      National champion         Postseason invitational champion  
      Conference regular season champion         Conference regular season and conference tournament champion
      Division regular season champion       Division regular season and conference tournament champion
      Conference tournament champion


External linksEdit