Morgan Bayard Wootten (born April 21, 1931, Durham, North Carolina) is an American former high school basketball coach. From 1956 to 2002, he coached at DeMatha Catholic High School in Hyattsville, Maryland. He has the second most wins as a head coach in the history of basketball on any level, behind Robert Hughes. A number of his players went on to play in the NBA, includingAdrian Dantley and Danny Ferry. Wootten gained legendary status in 1965, when his DeMatha team beat Lew Alcindor’s Power Memorial Academy and ended their 71-game winning streak. His career coaching record stands at 1,274-192. As the head coach of DeMatha basketball, Wootten won 5 High School National Championships, 22 Washington, DC Championships, and 33 Washington Catholic Athletic Conference championships.
Former UCLA basketball coach John Wooden (1910–2010) described his admiration for Wootten when he said, “I know of no finer coach at any level – high school, college or pro. I stand in awe of him.” On October 13, 2000, Coach Wootten was inducted into theHall of Fame, one of three high school basketball coaches ever so honored. His overall record at the time was 1,210 wins and 183 losses.
Wootten attended Montgomery Blair High School in Silver Spring before moving on to University of Maryland. During his coaching career at DeMatha, located just two miles away from his alma mater, he received job offers from North Carolina State, Georgetownand American and interest from Duke, Wake Forest, and Virginia. Wootten turned down the offers, according to Sports Illustrated, because the Maryland job, which was not forthcoming, was the only college job he wanted.
Wootten resides in University Park, Maryland with his wife, Kathy, who he has been married to since 1964. He has five children, Cathy, Carol, Tricia, Brendan, and Joe, and 14 grandchildren.
In 1996, Wootten nearly died because of a malfunctioning liver and was quickly rushed to the hospital for a liver transplant. Several years later, aged 75, one of his kidneys failed, and he received a transplant; the donor was his son, Joe Wootten.
Wootten has written five books (including A Coach for All Seasons, Coaching Basketball Successfully, and From Orphans to Champions). His youngest son, Joe Wootten, follows his lead and is a successful basketball coach at Bishop O’Connell High School in Arlington, Virginia. They both lead one of the largest camps in the US, Coach Wootten’s Basketball Camp, held in Frostburg, Maryland at Frostburg State University and at Bishop O’Connell High School.
Accomplishments and honors
5x High School National Championships(1962, 1965, 1968, 1978, 1984)
22x Washington, DC Championships (1961, 1962, 1963, 1964, 1965, 1966, 1968, 1970, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1978, 1979, 1981, 1982, 1983, 1984, 1988, 1991, 1994, 1998, 2002)
33x WCAC Championships (1961, 1962, 1963, 1964, 1965, 1966, 1967, 1968, 1970, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1974, 1975, 1976, 1978, 1979, 1980, 1981, 1982, 1983, 1984, 1985, 1987, 1988, 1990, 1991, 1992, 1994, 1996, 1998, 2001, 2002)
Basketball Hall of Fame
Inducted in 2000