John Cropp to be Inducted into Tennessee Sports Hall of Fame
LEXINGTON, Ky. -- John Cropp, longtime University of Kentucky administrator and coach, will be inducted into the Tennessee Sports Hall of Fame on Saturday in Nashville.
During his 23 years with UK Athletics, Cropp was instrumental in a number of different programs, most notably with football and softball. Cropp was associate director of athletics/administration from 1995-2013 after serving previously as assistant AD for special projects (1993-95), athletics recruiting coordinator (1992-93) and assistant football coach (1991).
Cropp was the founding administrator of the UK softball program since the program threw its first pitch in 1997 and helped grow the program into a nationally prominent squad. UK softball has reached seven consecutive NCAA Tournaments, including an appearance in the 2014 College World Series. The UK softball facility, John Cropp Stadium, was named in his honor when it opened in 2013.
For the first 22 years of Cropp's athletics career he was involved in coaching football. His first head coaching position came at Tennessee High School in Bristol, Tenn. Cropp's squads complied an impressive 48-15-3 record with two Class AAA state titles (1971, `72) and the 1972 mythical national championship.
Cropp returned to his alma mater, Vanderbilt, in 1973 as an assistant coach under Steve Sloan. He followed Sloan as an assistant to Texas Tech (1975-77), Ole Miss (1978-82) and Duke (1983). In 1984, Cropp returned to Vanderbilt under head coach George MacIntyre. He entered private business for two years (1986-88) before returning to Vanderbilt. Cropp served as assistant athletics director for compliance at VU for three years before coming to Kentucky.
Cropp earned three varsity letters at Vanderbilt as a guard/linebacker. He received the Wade-Looney Memorial Award as a senior and graduated in 1961. He earned his masters of arts in teaching in 1962.
Cropp and his wife, Mary Ann, have two grown children, Karen and David, and three grandchildren, Kate, Baxter and Griffin.
Another of the 11 inductees, longtime college and pro football coach Bob Cummings, has a tie to the University of Kentucky. Cummings was an assistant coach at UK in 1959-60.