1982 Hall of Honor
A lithe 6-foot-8 forward, Jim Jones stunned opponents with a quick and deadly “soft touch” from long range to go with his expected point production from in close. He starred on Buccaneer basketball teams which won 49 of 63 games and two successive Midwest Conference titles in three years. As a junior and senior, while teamed with younger brother Kit, he not only was a unanimous all-conference first-team selection but also the league’s top scorer, averaging better than 20 points a game each season. Jones totaled 902 points, shooting 52.7 percent from the field and 77.7 percent from the free-throw line. He climaxed his collegiate career in 1967-68 by serving as team captain, winning MVP honors, and being named first recipient of the Pat Dawson Award for outstanding achievement in athletics, scholarship and leadership. Jones was drafted twice - first by the ABA’s Houston Mavericks and then by the Army, whose call had top priority. An all-Third Army Tournament first-team choice, he later played two years of professional basketball in Portugal. Jones next worked in community youth service before earning a master of fine arts degree; currently, he is an independent artist craftsman engaged in musical instrument construction in Virginia.
Kit Jones overcame chronic knee problems and a three-year NCAA playing limit to become the sixth leading scorer in Beloit basketball history with 1,118 points. He was an aggressive 6-foot-7 center who used his height and strength to dominate both boards, recording 613 rebounds in pacing the Buccaneers each year in this category. Teamed with older brother Tim, to whom he was runnerup in Midwest Conference scoring as a junior, Jones helped Beloit to league titles in 1967 and 1968. Like Jim, he won all-conference first-team honors for two consecutive years, made more than 50 per cent of his field goal tries and, as a senior when he again was the league’s second highest scorer, was named captain, MVP and Dawson Award recipient. He played pro ball in Portugal for four years, scoring 568 points in 18 games one season, served as player – coach and competed in European Cup action. Jones also coached junior teams, with one providing biggest thrill by winning the Lisbon championship by a 100-53 score. Now a Massachusetts bi-lingual program teacher who is proficient in Spanish, French, Chinese and Portuguese, he is also a free-lance musician who sings, composes, plays guitar and has his own band.
Art Wheeler was an outstanding four-sport performer who earned a dozen letters and won major honors while competing both for and against Beloit. A resident of Appleton, he opposed the Gold as a freshman and sophomore while attending arch state rival Lawrence College. There he participated in football, basketball, track and baseball, received all-conference recognition as a basketball center, and became state record holder in the javelin throw. Wheeler dropped out of school for a year, then joined legendary Coach Tommy Mills at Beloit in time to share the joys of championships won on the gridiron, hardcourt and track during the College’s “second golden ago of athletics.” He was an all-league center on the 1923 football team, which posted a 6-1-1 mark; played an integral role on basketball squads which finished 13-2 and 14-0 in successive seasons; and left the mound to become a reliable catcher on the 1923 baseball team, which faced such strong foes as Notre Dame and the Michigan Aggies. After coaching three sports at Elgin Junior College and Academy for two years, he worked out of Los Angeles as a manufacturer’s representative until his retirement in 1979.