as the "Madison Square Garden of the Plains," Gallagher-Iba Arena
stands as one of the country's most revered sporting venues. It's the
oldest basketball arena in the Big 12, and is home to more national
championships than any other facility in America.
In 2013-14, for the 76th season,
the home of Oklahoma State Cowboy Basketball will be storied
Gallagher-Iba Arena. In its 13th season since a major renovation
took place, Gallagher-Iba Arena is still considered one of the
finest collegiate basketball arenas in the country and can be
described with just a single word — Historic!
Despite doubling the size of the facility prior to the
2000-01 season, the arena still provides an up-close view from
any seat in the house, helping to give the Cowboys a tremendous
homecourt advantage. This can be evidenced by OSU’s 328-47
record over the past quarter century, sporting an .875 winning
percentage during that span.
The historic building underwent a massive $56 million
construction project and is the focal part of the
OSU Athletics Center. Its 13,611-seat capacity allows more
Oklahoma State fans to enjoy OSU athletic events, and the
auxiliary facilities are second to none in the region.
Originally named Gallagher Hall after OSU’s fabled wrestling
Ed Gallagher, the Board of Regents honored legendary Cowboy
Iba when the arena was remodeled in 1987, and his name was
added to the arena’s title.
Gallagher served as OSU’s wrestling coach from 1916-40. In his
23 years, OSU won 11 national championships and compiled a
138-5-4 dual record. Gallagher was also an outstanding athlete
while attending then Oklahoma A&M. He was captain of the track
team for three years, and his 99-yard run against Kansas State
in 1908 will always stand as the longest football run in school
Iba, who passed away in January of 1993, was a coaching giant in
the sport of basketball. He coached in 1,105 collegiate games,
and his 767 career wins were the second most to Adolph Rupp when
he retired in 1970. Iba served as coach and athletic director at
OSU from 1935-70, and in those 36 seasons, posted a 655-316
record while guiding the Cowboys to 13 league championships,
eight NCAA Tournament appearances and the 1945 and 1946 NCAA
Along with the expansion of the historic arena, the OSU
Athletics Center has many features. A total of 14 luxury suites
stretch across the west side of the facility, overlooking both
Eddie Sutton Court and
Boone Pickens Stadium. Banners signifying the success of
Oklahoma State Athletics are hung from the rafters. The pride of
OSU athletic triumphs are also illustrated in photographic and
trophy displays in Heritage Hall, a museum dedicated to athletic
and academic excellence at OSU.
Even after two major construction projects, today’s players
still compete on the gym’s original white maple floor, which was
the country’s most expensive when it was installed in 1938. The
arena was built in 1938 at a cost of $1.5 million. National
powers Oklahoma A&M and Kansas opened the facility on Dec. 9 in
a game that matched coaching legends Henry Iba and Phog Allen.
OSU won the game, 21-15.
As OSU enters the 2013-14 season, its home record has been
impressive. Through the first 75 years in the building, the
Cowboys have posted a 739-202 record at home with 10 undefeated
seasons. Over the last 25 years, OSU has recorded a 328-47
record at home. In addition, the Cowboys’ 80-game homecourt
non-conference winning streak, which ran from 1987-98, ranks
fifth in NCAA Division I history. In fact, the Cowboys have lost
just three regular-season non-conference home games since 1987.
Quick Facts - Cowboy Basketball in GIA OSU record in GIA: 699-194 (78.3%)
Conference Record in GIA: 327-147 (69%)
Non-Conference Record: 372-47 (88.8%)
Undefeated Seasons: 10
10-Win Seasons: 38
Quick Facts - Cowboy Wrestling in GIA
OSU record in GIA: 429-35-5 (92%)
NCAA team championships since opening: 25
Unbeaten/Untied Seasons: 40
The original structure, called the 4-H Club and Student
Activity Building when it was built in 1938 at a cost of $1.5 million,
and was dubbed the "Madison Square Garden of the Plains," standing as
one of the premier sporting venues in the region. The arena was
unveiled in grand fashion, as national basketball powers Oklahoma State
and Kansas opened the facility on December 9, 1938, in a game that
matched coaching legends Henry Iba and Phog Allen. Mr. Iba's Cowboys
won that game, 21-15.
The facility was quickly rechristened as Gallagher Hall in
honor of fabled Oklahoma A&M wrestling coach Ed Gallagher.
Gallagher is widely renowned as the father of modern amateur
wrestling, and crafted much of the sport while serving as Oklahoma
A&M wrestling coach from 1916-40. In his 23 years at the helm, OSU
won 11 team national championships and compiled a 138-5-4 dual record.
Gallagher was also an outstanding athlete while attending Oklahoma
A&M. He was captain of the track team for three years, and his
99-yard run against Kansas State in 1908 still stands as the longest
football run in school history.
The facility would see a second name change in 1987, when the
Board of Regents amended Gallagher Hall's name to recognize legendary
Cowboy basketball coach Henry Iba.
During his tenure in Stillwater, Mr. Iba served as a great
influence the game of basketball. It was in Gallagher-Iba Arena where
Mr. Iba shaped many of the philosophies that many basketball coaches
still teach today. He coached in 1,105 collegiate games, and his 767
career wins rank eighth in NCAA Division I history. Mr. Iba served as
coach and athletic director at Oklahoma State from 1935 to 70, and in
those 36 seasons, posted a 655-316 record while guiding the Cowboys to
13 league championships, eight NCAA appearances and the 1945 and 1946
Two seats are permanently reserved for Gallagher and Iba in
the southeast corner of the arena on the concourse level.
History of Gallagher-Iba
and Student Activity Building (capacity 9,000)
Hall, Gallagher Fieldhouse
1938 vs. Kansas (OSU won 21-15)
1939 vs. Indiana (OSU won 18-6)
Gallagher-Iba Arena (capacity 6,381)
1987 vs. Tulsa (OSU won 66-65)
New Gallagher-Iba Arena
Athletics Center - Gallagher-Iba Arena (capacity 13,611)
2000 vs. UALR (OSU won 70-60)
2001 vs. Oregon (OSU won 33-3)
Sutton Court on Jan. 15, 2005
Before moving into Gallagher Hall, the Oklahoma A&M Aggies played
in the original Armory (where the Business Administration building now
stands) from 1907 until 1919, when they moved into the new Armory (old
gym) which is now the Architecture Building.
The original capacity of Gallagher Hall (9,000)
decreased throughout the years, due to fire codes and such. By the
1986-87 season - prior to the first major renovation - the capacity was
The southwest lobby houses the
Remember the Ten memorial.
Gallagher Hall was home to one of the
original college basketball student sections.
Many of the modern principles of
college basketball were established by Mr. Iba's teams on the famous
white maple court.
A standing-room only crowd of 13,611
witnessed the Cowgirls' 82-63 win over in-state rival Oklahoma on Jan.
Wrestling at Gallagher-Iba Arena
No venue in America has a richer wrestling tradition than
Gallagher-Iba Arena, home of Oklahoma State wrestling since 1939. In its
beginning as Gallagher Hall, the gymnasium was named for Edward Clark
Gallagher, the Oklahoma A&M wrestling mentor who never wrestled
competitively but became the greatest coach of his time.
The 1987-88 season brought a new look and a new name to the hallowed
hall. When renovations were completed in January 1988, it was renamed
Gallagher-Iba Arena to honor the late Mr. Henry P. Iba, Oklahoma State’s
legendary basketball coach.
Gallagher-Iba Arena took on a new look once again in 2001. On Jan. 4,
2001 the OSU wrestling team hosted Oregon in the first match in the
newly renovated arena. Gallagher-Iba Arena underwent a $56 million
renovation, that increased the seating capacity of Gallagher-Iba Arena
to its current total of 13,611 seats.
The Cowboys set a new wrestling attendance record in the first season,
packing in 10,802 for a Bedlam Series dual against Oklahoma on Feb. 18.
Previously, the largest crowd was estimated at 8,300.
Since wrestling began in Gallagher-Iba Arena, the Cowboys have won 25
NCAA titles and have had 40 unbeaten and untied campaigns at home. One
of their longest winning streaks ran with the arena’s opening in 1939
and lasted until Feb. 16, 1951. During that period, Oklahoma State won
37 straight home duals, including no ties.
From the final dual of 1959 through the first five home duals of the
1967 season, Oklahoma State wrestled 67 duals without a loss, finishing
with an impressive 60-0-1 record before the streak was broken by
On Feb. 3, 1939, Oklahoma A&M wrestled for the first time inside the
arena, defeating Indiana by an 18-6 margin. On Feb. 3, 1989, the
Oklahoma State Cowboys hosted the Hoosiers in a celebration of the
50-year anniversary of the first Gallagher Hall dual. The Cowboys
defeated the Hoosiers, 28-6, in the 1989 dual.
OSU’s latest home winning streak of 50 consecutive duals was the
second-longest such streak without a loss or tie, as it began near the
end of the 1986 season and lasted until Jan. 30, 1993.
The name of the Bedlam Series rivalry
can be traced to the raucous crowds that packed Gallagher Hall whenever
OSU and OU tangled on the wrestling mat.