It’s always good to remember those who have made a big contribution to the game. Vinson “Vince” Miller was one of the greatest coaches in Public League history. Miller spent 27 years as the head basketball coach at Frankford High School.
Miller coached the Pioneers from 1972-98 compiling a sensational 351-171 overall record. He had two outstanding teams in 1988 and ‘89 that posted a tremendous 49-2 record over that time while capturing two Public League championships. He coached some terrific players such as Jeffery Clark, the late Rico Washington, Kevin Compton, Jason and Carlin Warley, Jamie Ross and Phil Andrews.
Miller passed away in 2009, but his legacy will live on forever at Frankford High School. On Monday, Jan. 19, Frankford High will name the court after him. It will be named the Vince Miller Memorial Court.
“This is a good way to honor him,” said Ben Dubin, Frankford High athletic director and Public League basketball chairman. “When I became the athletic director, I went to my principal [Reginald Fisher] and asked him about naming the court after Vince. I’m really pleased about ceremony. We’re going to have two games that day. We have a girls and boys game. The ceremony is going to take place between 12 and 12:30 p.m. It’s going to be the Vince Miller Memorial Court. It should be really nice.”
Miller really cared about his players on and off the court. He always wanted his players to use basketball as a tool for success. He had a big impact on the kids who played for them. His will be displayed nicely on the gym floor. It will serve as a reminder for all the great things he accomplished over the years.
When it came to basketball and education, Miller had a good foundation growing up. He was a great basketball player. He played at Overbrook High School with late basketball legend Wilt Chamberlain, who was Miller’s best friend. In 1954, he played on Overbrook High’s team went 20-0 and won the Public League and city championships. In 1955, Chamberlain and Miller guided Overbrook to its second consecutive city title.
Miller played his college basketball at North Carolina A&T with former West Philadelphia High standout Joe Howell and NBA great Al Attles. He also had a successful career as a chief scout for the Philadelphia 76ers and was involved with the Charles Baker and Sonny Hill League basketball programs.
In September, Miller was honored posthumously at the eighth annual Philadelphia Association of Black Sports and Culture (PABSC) for his outstanding efforts in basketball. He was also a member of the Wilt Chamberlain Postal Stamp Committee. On Dec. 5, 2014, the U.S. Postal Service issued two Forever stamps of Chamberlain.
This ceremony at Frankford should be another big moment for a person who has molded and shaped a number of youngsters into good basketball players, but also great people. Naming the court in his honor will be a really special event.