News Main Menu Bar Link to main page Link to Senators Link to Legislation Link to Schedule Link to Committees Link to Publications Link to News Link to Staff
News Navigation Menu Audio Clips OETA Capitol Coverage Podcasts Senator Photos Week In Review Press Releases Main Senate page. Find Your Senator Senate Votes Glossary

Oklahoma State Senate
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 73105
(405) 521-5600

Audio clip
Printer-friendly version

For Immediate Release: May 19, 2009

Senate Honors Wayman Tisdale

The state Senate on Tuesday honored the life and accomplishments of athlete and musician Wayman Tisdale. Tisdale played basketball at the University of Oklahoma from 1983-1985, where he was the first player in collegiate history to be named a first-team All-American by the Associated Press in his freshman, sophomore and junior seasons. He was the first athlete in Sooner history to have his jersey number retired.

Tisdale went on to a productive 12-year career as a professional basketball player. Upon his retirement as an athlete in 1995, Tisdale embarked on a successful career as a jazz musician, which continued until his death on May 15, 2009.

Senators Dan Newberry and Judy Eason McIntyre co-authored Senate Resolution 64 to recognize Tisdale’s accomplishments and mourn his loss. Sen. Eason McIntyre said Tisdale set an extraordinary example for others.

“Even more than his athletic ability, it was his boundless enthusiasm for life and his brilliant personality that set Wayman apart,” said Eason McIntyre, D-Tulsa. “He was a great family man and I’m proud to have this opportunity to honor him for leaving such a wonderful legacy. He was a great Oklahoman and we take tremendous pride in his achievements.”

In 1984, Tisdale was a member of the U.S. Olympic basketball team that won a gold medal in Los Angeles. He played with the Indiana Pacers from 1985 to 1989, with the Sacramento Kings from 1989 to 1994 and with the Phoenix Suns from 1994 through 1997. Upon his retirement from the NBA, Tisdale returned to his first love, music. Although he played both the keyboard and guitar, he is best known as a bass player. Four of his eight albums were in the top 10 of Billboard Magazine’s contemporary jazz chart.

In 2002, Tisdale was inducted into the Oklahoma Jazz Hale of Fame, receiving the Legacy Tribute Award. Last month, Tisdale was selected to the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame. His formal induction was scheduled for this November at the Spirit Center in Kansas City.

“Wayman Tisdale was one of the greatest players in the history of college basketball,” said Newberry, R-Tulsa. “While his athletic talents have made him a household name, it was his leadership and social conscience that distinguished him as an even greater asset to the state. His life is a testament to the kind of dedication and perseverance required to achieve greatness in any field.”

For more information contact:
Sen. Dan Newberry - (405) 521-5600
Sen. Eason McIntyre - (405) 521-5598

Inon: Horizontal Blue Band

May Press Releases | Press Releases