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  History

Founded in 1986, the Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame (OSHOF) became a part of the Jim Thorpe Association in 1989.

In August of 2013, the two brands, which were literally the same organization, with the same administration, same board of directors and same values, selected OSHOF as the cohesive umbrella brand of the organization going forward. All major initiatives of the OSHOF and previous Jim Thorpe Association would become sub brands of the OSHOF, most notably:

The Jim Thorpe Award (presented by the OSHOF).
The Warren Spahn Award (presented by the OSHOF).
Bright Path Youth Programs (a program of the OSHOF).
OSHOF Museum.
OSHOF Inductees/Members.

There are many more awards, events and programs that are conducted throughout the year by the OSHOF.

Currently, 160 Oklahoma sports figures, and two "teams of legend" have been inducted into the Hall of Fame, and nearly 150 are on the list of nominees. Each year a selection committee selects a ballot of 20 nominees from the list, which is voted on by members of the OSHOF, Hall of Fame nominees and sports journalists from around the state. Each voter selects at least two nominees for induction based on the criteria of accomplishments in athletics and close identification with Oklahoma. The Honors Committee may also name additional nominees for induction.

The Jim Thorpe Award, presented to the most outstanding defensive back in collegiate football yearly by the OSHOF, is the organization’s most high profile national presence. It is announced on ESPN’s College Football Awards Show and the Jim Thorpe Award Banquet is held in Oklahoma City each February. The Jim Thorpe Award was established in 1986.

The Warren Spahn Award is also a national award that honors the most outstanding left handed pitcher in Major League Baseball each year. The Award, established in 1999, is presented in conjunction with the Bricktown Rotary at the Warren Spahn Award Gala each January in Oklahoma City.

Bright Path, the English translation of Jim Thorpe’s Indian name, Wa-Tho-Huck, is the name for the OSHOF program that provides extensive community advocacy programs focused on youth. Through awards, education programs and athletic competition, the Bright Path Youth Program provides positive opportunities for youth to build self-esteem and pride.

To encourage excellence through sports, academics, health and fitness; preserving our sports heritage while building pride in Oklahoma in the spirit of Jim Thorpe.

MISSION:

To encourage excellence through sports, academics, health and fitness; preserving our sports heritage while building pride in Oklahoma in the spirit of Jim Thorpe.

VALUES:

Inspire youth
Preserves history
Remembers heroes
Defines excellence
Educates and entertains

PRINCIPLE

Encouraging and recognizing excellent character in people who demonstrate this through participation in sports.