Dippel tacks on Hall of Famer to crowded résumé

Herald Sports Writer

When her daughter, Megan, was playing for the Southridge girls basketball team as a senior during the 2011-12 season, Marilyn (Reckelhoff) Dippel could be found sitting in the stands with her husband, Tom, watching the same game she had devoted much of her life to at the same school where she flourished during her prep career.


It’s the same school where Dippel still holds the all-time leading scoring mantle at 1,494 career points and where she was named an Indiana All-Star and all-state selection after her senior season in 1983-84.

Now all these years later, she can add Hall of Famer to her already impressive résumé.

Dippel was one of 11 people chosen for the Indiana Basketball Hall of Fame’s 2014 women’s induction class. Dippel joins former players and coaches from around across the state who will be honored Saturday, April 26, at the 13th annual women’s award banquet in New Castle.

“The first day I found out, I was very emotional about it, because it’s a huge honor to receive that and especially at a fairly young age,” said Dippel, 47. “I’m just very grateful to have such a thing happen to me.”

Dippel averaged 24.1 points and 12 rebounds a game her senior season at Southridge before signing with the University of Louisville. There, she amassed 1,198 career points as a four-year starter and graduated as the school’s third all-time leading scorer, career leader in free throws made and in the top 10 of nine statistical categories. The university inducted her into the school’s athletic hall of fame in 2004.

After graduating, she delved into the world of coaching for a few years as an assistant coach at Louisville Manual High School and a head coach at a high school in Vermont.  She currently works as a professional tutor in the academic support office at Vincennes University Jasper Campus.

She did have one more go at coaching, though. She led her daughter as the freshman coach at Southridge.

Megan, as well as Marilyn’s son, Luke — a football and baseball player at Southridge — both attend the University of Southern Indiana. Dippel still gets the itch to continue coaching, but she’s fine enjoying sports with her family, especially watching her Cardinals, who enjoyed success on the men’s and women’s side during last season’s NCAA Tournament.

“I can enjoy (basketball) as much. Watching the men’s Final Four last year, the whole month of March was probably the happiest I’ve ever been,” she said with a laugh.

“We kind of laugh about it, but some families do certain kinds of things and we’ve always played sports together,” she added. “It’s just something we’ve always done and enjoyed and continue to enjoy. Luke, when he’s home on the weekends, is kind of my partner in watching basketball.”

The familial aspect of hoops has always been strong for Dippel, who was adamant about thanking her teammates and community.

“I guess I don’t look at this as so much as an individual honor even though it says my name,” she said. “Basketball is a team sport, and I had really great coaches and teammates and staff at
Southridge behind me, along with my family.”

Dippel also was named to the Indiana Basketball Hall of Fame’s Silver Anniversary team in 2009. She is the first Southridge graduate to be inducted into the Indiana Basketball Hall of Fame.

“They’ve had a lot of great women athletes come through Southridge, so to get this means a lot to me personally,” she said.

Contact Joseph Fanelli at jfanelli@dcherald.com.

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