Southwestern Oklahoma State University

Athletic Hall of Fame

Travis Flippin

Flippin, a graduate of Retrop High School, transferred to SWOSU in 1952 after originally attending Oklahoma State University on a baseball/basketball scholarship. Flippin’s arrival quickly impacted the fortunes of both Bulldog teams.

He starred on the 1952 basketball team that finished the year with a 24-6 record and won the conference title by beating arch rival Central State in a memorable best two-of-three series. The Bulldogs advanced to the NAIA National Tournament for the first time in school history before being beaten by St. Peters College of New Jersey in the first round.

Flippin’s best work may have come on the baseball diamond as the starting shortstop. Known for his remarkable wizardry with the glove, Flippin showcased his ability in the 1955 conference championship game throwing out the potential game-winning run in the 11th inning of a scoreless tie with Phillips. The Bulldogs went on to win that day 1-0 in 12 innings. The ‘55 conference championship was part of nine straight the Bulldogs won during the decade under coach Rankin Williams.

Flippin went on to play minor league baseball with the Boston Red Sox organization before eventually settling on a career as a coach and teacher. He began his education career at Retrop before moving to Port where he led the girls basketball team to four state tournament appearances and the softball team to two others. He then concluded his coaching and teaching career in 1968 at Carter Public Schools.

Flippin and his wife, Janet, have two children, Brad and Jan, who both graduated as class valedictorians at Sentinel High School and later earned bachelor’s degrees from SWOSU.