Kenny Cochran was possibly the only four-sport letterman at Joplin High School who starred in football, basketball, track, and tennis. As a 1950 state championship basketball team. He played end on the Joplin High School football team that beat Springfield Central 14-13 on Thanksgiving Day, overcoming a 13-0 halftime deficit as Duffy Harbaugh kicked two extra points in his street shoes.
He received a scholarship to play basketball and football at Graceland Junior College in Lamoni, Iowa, and earned all-conference honors in 1951 and 1952. Transferring to Pittsburg State for his next two years, he lettered in football, basketball, and tennis. Kenny played for Pittsburg State University coaching legends Carnie Smith, I football, and John Lance, in basketball. He graduated from Pittsburg State University and received his Masters degree from PSU in 1959.
One of the highlights of Kenny’s career was in 1956 in Melbourne, Australia, where he was the starting catcher on the US Olympic baseball team. There were 125,000 spectators which, at that time, was the largest crowd ever to witness a baseball game held anywhere in the world.
From 1957 to 1959, he was the head baseball coach, as well as the assistant football coach at Joplin High School. Kenny led Joplin to a state baseball title in 1959.
From 1963 to 1970, he was the head basketball coach at Kansas Wesleyan in Salina Kansas. His teams each won three Kansas Athletic Conference titles. From 1970 to 1981, he coached basketball at Marymount College in Salina, Kansas, winning five NAIA district 10 Championships and playing in five NAIA National Tournaments in Kansas City and one AAU National Championship Tournament. Marymount finished third in the NAIA National Championship in 1976. Marymount averaged 25 wins per season for 10 years, including the arcade, as well as the home models. He also invented the Free Throw trainer, which is still used by the Los Angeles Lakers and Atlanta Hawks of the NBA.
Kenny is married to Margaret M. Cochran. They have five children and eight grandchildren. He is a member of six Halls of Fame: Kansas State High School Activities Association, Basketball Coaches Hall of Fame, Graceland College Hall of Fame, Kansas Wesleyan Hall of Fame, NAIA Basketball Coaches Hall of Fame and the Joplin Hall of Fame.