Cecil R. May

Year Inducted: 1985

Category: Coaches

Schools / Organizations: Waterman High School
East Aurora High School

Biography: Here’s what a member of famed Wiz Kids, of the University of Illinois, Jack Smiley, has to say about his high school coach at Waterman High School, Cecil R. May. “I was extremely fortunate to have had Cecil R. May coaching me through the late 30s and early 40s. Cecil was my coach in basketball and baseball, starting in eight grade and ending with my senior year at Waterman High School. As any aspiring athlete, I made plenty of mistakes, yet not a single time in five years did Coach May ever scold or criticize. Cecil was a real down to earth teacher, always looking to improve his players in passing, shooting, rebounding, defense and attitudes. Words coming from Cecil were always sincere, meaningful, and progressive. We had a favorite expression for our coach, ‘C.R. Fundamental May’. We were subjected to hours and hours of fundamentals. He knew the rewards would be forthcoming. He knew they’d pay off on a higher level. He personally sold Doug Mills, Illinois basketball Coach, on a scholarship for a 4th team All-State Honorable Mention player. All those fundamentals instilled into my 6’3” frame was the key to being elevated to a regular on the Illinois Whiz Kids team. I don’t have a four-year record on wins and losses at Waterman, but our senior year it was 32-4 and over four years, I imagined it was 100-15.” In all May coached 23 years starting at Dadeville, Mo., Ash Grove, Mo. (boys and girls), Waterman and East Aurora. May was often referred to in the Fox Valley area as “The Fox”. His 1947 East Aurora team earned a trip to the Sweet Sixteen. May’s winning percentage was .740.  Cecil died on December 28, 2013.