Sports Editor, The Alvin Advertiser
SAN MARCOS — Aubrey Horner, who served as a teacher and coach in the Alvin ISD for over three decades, was inducted into the Texas State University Athletic Hall of Honor on Nov. 18 in San Marcos.
Induction into the Hall of Honor is the highest athletic honor given to former Texas State letter winners, who have been nominated by their fellow lettermen.
Horner Joined fellow inductees Rudy Bowles and Claude Mathis in ceremonies at the Sac N Pac room in Bobcat Stadium. The trio were also recognized during the Nov. 19 halftime of the Texas State-Sam Houston state contest.
“It was an extreme pleasure to find out about the induction and it’s something I will have memories for the rest of my life,” Horner said.
Having lettered in several sports at both the high school and collegiate level, the 1957 Texas State Graduate performed several coaching roles at Alvin High School during a 16-year stint, starting with being hired as the Yellowjackets’ Head Tennis Coach in ‘57.
With Horner at the helm, Sue Briner and Billy Roland finished as state-runners for Alvin in 1959, while Rachel Adams-Thompson and Ruth Holdorff-Ryan captured the girl’s state doubles championship in 1965.
In her book, Covering Home, Holdorff-Ryan described Horner as “a good fundamental coach” whom she was very fortunate that he was willing to take the time to work with her before she was even on the team or attending high school.
“I would often go the school to hit balls against the backboard after school and he (Horner) offered to work with me after he finished with the high school team’s practice sessions each day,” Holdorff-Ryan explained.
Along with serving as and assistant football coach from 1963-73, Horner switched from the tennis to basketball court in 1965, taking over the Jackets’ Head Basketball Coach duties.
Horner worked the hoop side lines for the next eight years with his 1969-70 squad advancing all the way to the regional finals with an impressive 21-4 record.
After going 12-1 in district play, the Jackets topped Dulles in the bi-district playoffs to advance to the regional finals and were defeated by Cy-Fair. The 70’s team delivered the most successful playoff run in Alvin for the past 50 years.
“The depth of that group was the thing that stood out the most,” Horner said. “We had nine seniors out of 11 and they were all solid players.
“When our leading scorer Frank Johnstone fouled out in the bi-district game against Dulles, Gene Haygood came in and scored eight points in the final period to help us advance to the next round.”
Born and raised in Woodsboro, Horner attended Woodsboro High School from 1949-1952. During his high school years, he lettered in four sports, played in the State Basketball Tournament three times, and was a four-year varsity letterman. Horner earned All-State Basketball accolades in 1952 and was also selected to play in the Texas High School Coaches’ Association All-Star Game the same year.
At Texas State (then known as Southwest Texas State), Horner was a four-year letter winner as a point guard for men’s basketball from 1952-1956 and also lettered one year as a member of the tennis team during the 1956 season
While on the basketball team, Horner was selected to the Lone Star Conference All-Conference Second team in his senior season and was named to the Lone Star Conference Honorable Mention team during his junior year. Horner was the second person in Bobcat history to letter all four years of his college career, and was captain of the team his senior season. During his four year career at Texas State, the Bobcats compiled an overall record of 74-20, including a 21-3 record his freshman season and a 20-5 record his junior year.
During the 1954-1955 season, the Bobcats were co-champions of the Lone Star Conference. That season Horner also led the Bobcats in free throw percentage. Horner was also a student basketball coach under the direction of Head Coach Milton Jowers form 1956-1957.
“It was kind of ironic that I was moved up to the varsity basketball teams by both my high school and college coaches my freshmen years during the Christmas holidays,” Horner said.
Once his basketball eligibility was used up, Horner then excelled on the tennis court by leading the Bobcats his senior year as the No. 1 ranked player on the team. He graduated from Texas State in 1957 with a bachelor’s degree in Physical Education and minor in Biology.
Horner is still much involved in the Alvin community and was elected the Commissioner of the Brazoria County Conservation District, a position he served for 12 years. He is part of the Alvin ISD Education Foundation, has been a member of the Alvin Lions Club since 1989, serving as president in 2000, and is an active member of the South Park Baptist Church. Adding to his versatility as both a coach and a player, Horner has also been recognized for his work as a referee as he was inducted into the Texas Association of Sports Officials Football Division as an Honorary Life Member in 2006 after officiating basketball and football for over 20 years.
(Editors note: the article on Horner first appeared in THE ALVIN ADVERTISER on Dec. 14 and is published with permission.)