For the second time in as many years a former Booneville High School head coach is going to be inducted in the Arkansas High School Coaches Association Hall of Fame.
“I’m proud to get it, but it was the kids I coached, they’re the ones that should be being honored,” said Scheel.
Scheel, who was 95-16, in nine years at Booneville (1981-1989), will be inducted on July 13 along with coaches Brad Blew of Farmington, Bill Barden of Harding Academy, Buster Campbell of Riverside, Marvin Lindsey of Magnolia and Warren Bane of Lockesburg.
“That was utopia,” Scheel said of his time in Booneville. “If there is a Camelot in the coaching industry that would have been my Camelot. With the administration we had, and the great assistant coaches and the kids who worked so hard — you couldn’t work them too hard.”
“They expected to win every game when they stepped out on the field. It was a great place to coach.”
They did win, a lot. Scheel’s first two teams were a combined 13-7, the next seven were 82-9. Among the 95 wins is the 1986 state title, the school’s first.
“It was a tough transition period,” said Doug Shott, who was a senior when Scheel came to town in 1981. “We found ways to win and it taught me a lesson in perseverance that is still with me today. I knew without a doubt that I was in the best shape of my life and I believed that conditioning couldn’t be matched by any opponent.
“Coach Scheel is definitely deserving as a Hall of Fame Coach.”
Scheel’s 1983 team was the first Booneville team to finish an unbeaten regular season in 30 years. The 1984 and 1985 teams duplicated the feat and his 1988 and 1989 teams made it five times in seven years.
In addition to the title, the Bearcats also reached the finals in 1985, 1988 and 1989 under Scheel.
After leaving Booneville Scheel went to Magnolia, where he also took a team to the state finals, on to Newport, where his first team went 10-2, then to Morrilton and Berryville, from where he retired, and ironically, is where Shott is now the head coach.
Prior to coming to Booneville, Scheel was an assistant at West Fork and at Lonoke before landing his first head coaching job at Harmony Grove in Camden then on to Beebe for three years.
Combined, Scheels teams more than 210 games as a head coach.
Also being enshrined in July are athletic directors Doug Kilgore of Little Rock, Derril Smith of El Dorado and Kathy Tadlock of the Arkansas Activities Association; and officials Troy Davidson of Bartlett, Tenn., Larry Jayroe of Forrest City, Lyden Polk of Rogers, Mike Rottinghaus of Greenbrier, Ron Shelby of Camden and Brannon Thiesse of Jonesboro.