Founded in 1986, the Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame became a part of the Jim Thorpe Association in 1989. The Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame was started by Oklahoma City Mayor Mick Cornett, who still serves the traditional role as Master of Ceremonies to this day. As of 2018, 180 Oklahoma sports figures, and two "teams of legend" have been inducted into the Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame, and nearly 150 are on the list of nominees. The Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame is proud to honor legendary Oklahomans, and their gratitude, humility, and accomplishments. The exhibits, artifacts, and memorabilia of all members can be seen inside of the Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame & Jim Thorpe Museum.
Anyone can nominate someone for induction into the Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame. The basic criteria for being accepted as a nominee are accomplishments in sports and identification with the State of Oklahoma. An athlete must be retired from his/her sport for at least five years or be fifty years of age. Nominations are reviewed annually by the Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame Honors Committee to determine who will be added to the list of qualified nominees.
The Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame Honors Committee meets annually to select two “old timers” for induction into the Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame. These are great athletes from past years who no longer have the name recognition to be selected by the general voting procedure. One of these must be deceased.
Each year, the selection committee selects a ballot of 20 from the list of nominees. The ballot is submitted to voters all across the nation. The voters include: members of the Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame, the Oklahoma news media, former NFL and MLB players, as well as, many other sports personalities. Voters select at least two inductees, while the Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame Honors Committee selects additional honorees, allowing for special situations and/or exceptions to be made.
OKLAHOMA SPORTS HALL OF FAME