C. J. HIXSON
CLASS OF 1999
C. J. Hixson was born in Arkansas and graduated from Fort Smith High School excelling in basketball, baseball, and tennis. His tennis accomplishments include four consecutive Arkansas State High School # 1 Singles Championships and a # 1 Doubles Championship as a freshman with partner Charlie Jones, a long-time sports announcer with NBC-TV. C. J. was an outstanding high school baseball player also, but it was basketball that brought him to Oklahoma. He went to Oklahoma A & M on a full basketball scholarship after leading Fort Smith to the Arkansas State High School Basketball Championship in 1951. As a strapping 6'-3", 157 pound center, he had 14 rebounds and scored 21 points in Fort Smith's 42-35 finals victory over Cedar Ridge.
At Oklahoma A & M, Hixson was a part-time starter and a valuable role player as his Aggie teams advanced to the NCAA final eight in 1953 and 1954. Among his teammates were Don Haskins, the long-time Texas-El Paso Coach, Eddie Sutton, current OSU basketball coach, and Jerry Hale, a former ORU coach. In tennis, he won the # 1 Singles title in the Missouri Valley Conference as a sophomore. After graduating in 1955, he continued to play top caliber tennis while serving in the Army in Germany.
He made his home in Tulsa in 1960 and confined most of his tennis playing to local tournaments as he and his wife Barbara focused on raising their two sons, Grand and Kent. A degenerative left hip, which started bothering C. J. when he was 25 years old, has limited him to playing doubles. But, with longtime partner Ollie Gresham, he is still playing top tennis. They won the Missouri Valley Men's 55 Indoor and Outdoor Championships in 1990 and 1991 plus many other state and local events.
C. J. was inducted into the Arkansas Tennis Hall of Fame in 1992 and into the Missouri Valley Tennis Association Hall of Fame in 1993. He is one of the five original members of the Oklahoma Tennis Hall of Fame.