by S. Purdom
Photo 1: Andy Gupton, MHS 1994 graduate, pictured with (from left) Coy Samons, MISD superintendent, Teresa Speed, MHS principal, Andy Gupton, 1994 MHS graduate and Keith Hodge, MHS Football coach.
Photo 2: (far left) David Bloodworth, MHS football assistant coach, Andy Gupton, 1994 MHS graduate, pictured with WMHS TV 13 members, Will Lovins, Cain Cazares, Echo Falwell, Neely Gibson, Korey Knight, Embrey Flener, Katelyn Wuest, Maggie Wuest, Sydny Tucker and Beau Osborne. TV 13 members interviewed Bloodworth and Gupton about Football traditions and the significance of the Ty Holland Stadium and MHS Friday night football. The story will be aired on a future Tiger Stripes show.
Murray, Ky., Sept. 11-----Andy Gupton, 1994 MHS graduate and former member of the MHS football team, donated pictures of the late Ty Holland to Murray High School. Gupton, who played tight end under the direction of former MHS coach Rick Fisher, found the photos in an abandoned house. Gupton, and his wife, Dr. Emily Gupton, both agreed these photos needed to be returned to Murray High School for the historical significance. They took the billfold sized photos to Ken Andrus, of Oakwood studio. Andrus was able to restore them and enlarge them to represent the athleticism abilities of the late Holland.
Gupton, Murray native and president of Murray Construction and Poplar Place Properties, said as soon as he found the photos he knew where they belonged. “These are a very important piece of history. They are photos of the man Ty Holland Stadium is named after,” he explained. “Lots of great men played in the stadium and their spirits are still there.”
Ty “Preston” Holland was a native of Murray and a 1924 Murray High School graduate and member of Murray High’s football, basketball, track and baseball team while a student. A legacy to the MHS 105-year old football tradition, Holland nurtured the respect and bond that was the founding staple to the historic program. A 1928 Murray State University graduate who received his masters from MSU in 1946 and was later honored with an MSU honorary doctoral degree, Holland was a Kentucky coaching legend, who still ranks in the top tier of Kentucky coaches touted as “Kentucky’s Winningest Coach.”
A native of Murray and a 1924 Murray High School graduate and member of Murray High’s football, basketball, track and baseball team while a student., Holland is a legacy to the MHS 105-year old football tradition who nurtured the respect and bond that was the founding staple to the historic program.
A 1928 Murray State University graduate who received his masters from MSU in 1946 and was later honored with an honorary doctoral degree from MSU, Holland was a Kentucky coaching legend who still ranks in the top tier of Kentucky coaches. After bringing the Murray Tigers to their first championship title, Holland was named the 1961 Kentucky Coach of The Year. A 1989 Kentucky High School Athletic Association Hall of Fame recipient, Holland was touted with the most wins of any Kentucky coach with a 249-159-28 record upon his retirement for his career that spanned from 1930-1973. The former KHSAA Board of Control member from 1961-69, Holland also served as long-time coach of Tiger basketball, baseball, and track teams.
Constructed in 1939 as a Depression-era public works project (Works Progress Administration, a New Deal measure under the guidance of the late President Franklin D. Rossevelt), the Ty Holland Stadium is one of the few remaining Kentucky state structures. The Preston “Ty” Holland Memorial Scholarship was established in 1973 upon his retirement and is awarded each year to a Murray High Student who will attend State University.
Coy Samons, MISD superintendent, said this gift is one that will continue to enrich the history of MISD. “We appreciate efforts from alumni like Mr. Gupton, which promotes our motto of tradition, pride and excellence.”