Murphy, Askins inducted into Alabama Sports Hall of Fame Saturday night


Courtesy of UA Athletics

Alabama softball coach Patrick Murphy gives his induction speech at the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame ceremony on May 7 at the Sheraton Birmingham Hotel in Birmingham, Alabama.

Mathey Gibson, Contributing Writer

Alabama softball head coach Patrick Murphy and former men’s basketball standout Keith Askins were inducted into the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame for the Class of 2022. The ceremony took place Saturday night at the Sheraton Birmingham Hotel.

Born Nov. 28, 1965 in Waterloo, Iowa, Murphy began his coaching career at the University of Louisiana-Lafayette in 1990. In 1996, Murphy was hired as an assistant coach at Alabama under Kalum Haack. In 1999, Murphy was named the Head Coach at Alabama after Haack’s departure— taking the Crimson Tide to its first Women’s College World Series a year later in 2000. In 2012, Murphy led Alabama to its first National Title. Under Coach Murphy, the Crimson Tide have appeared in 13 Women’s College World Series, and won five SEC Tournament Championships.

“I can’t thank everyone from the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame enough,” Murphy said. “It’s an incredible honor. This kind of thing doesn’t happen to a guy from a small town in Iowa. Congrats to everyone else honored tonight. When I started this job, I wanted to accomplish four things. I wanted to have a family atmosphere, I wanted a team full of servant leaders, I wanted a team that was full of ‘mudita’ and I wanted everyone on the team to have an attitude of gratitude. To whom much is given, much is expected in return.”

Born Dec. 15, 1967 in Athens, Ala., Askins played forward for the University of Alabama from 1986 to 1990. Under head coach Wimp Sanderson, Askins was a member of three SEC tournament champion teams and reached the Sweet Sixteen twice. In 1990, he signed with the Miami Heat as an undrafted free agent— playing nine seasons as a reserve and defensive specialist. Askins served as a captain for the Heat for four consecutive seasons from 1995 to 1999, and won the team’s leadership award in both the 1995 and 1996 seasons. After retiring in 1999, he joined Miami’s coaching staff as an assistant for Pat Riley, Stan Van Gundy, and Erik Spoelstra – winning three NBA championships. After 14 years on the Heat coaching staff, Askins became the organization’s Director of College and Pro Scouting, as well as the Assistant General Manager of the Sioux Falls SkyForce.

Askins and Murphy are two of eight members from this year’s Alabama Sports Hall of Fame class that includes William Andrews, Jake Peavy, Justin Tuck, Doyle Alexander, Rusty Greer, and Phillip Rivers.

The Alabama Sports Hall of Fame immortalizes those who, by athletic achievement, have brought honor to the state of Alabama and to themselves through their performance on and off the field.

Beginning with the first class in 1969, this is the 54th Class inducted into the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame. The eight newly elected inductees bring the total number of inductees to 385.