For those who have attended an Oregon State men’s basketball game at Gill Coliseum, there’s rarely an off night that a member of the Tinkle family isn’t in the crowd cheering on the Beavers.
While their father Wayne Tinkle is head coach, Oregon State basketball means much more to them – it’s family.
Despite not being able to hug or high-five their dad or any of the Beavers players in the NCAA Tournament due to COVID-19 guidelines, Tinkle’s son Tres, his daughters Joslyn and Elle, and his wife Lisa have been in the stands each game rooting on Oregon State in its Cinderella run during March Madness.
After the Beavers secured their first Sweet 16 appearance since 1982 after defeating No. 4 Oklahoma State 80-70 on Sunday night, the 55-year-old head coach reflected on what it’s like to share the moment with the Tinkle clan.
“It’s an incredible deal to share with my family,” Tinkle said. “First of all, Tres wore a t-shirt our first game and it was a picture of Jarod Lucas shooting a jumper, some folks thought it was a picture of himself which he would never do. And then after the game the other night, he asked Ryan Lawrence, our equipment manager, if he could have a Roman Silva jersey. He wore a Zach Reichle jersey for a while and he’s fired up, but you know what? It was too bad he missed out his freshman year with the leg injury. It was too bad it was swept away last year because we felt like we were about to make the same kind of run. He’s knee-deep in it with us, so is my wife and daughters and they’re passionate, they’re loyal, and I just wish I could share it with them.
“We walked through Victory Field the other day and stood about 12 feet apart, just to visit there outside the fence, but we’ll find the time, we’ll find time. I’m so appreciative of the family I grew up with, with the family that I now have as an adult.”
Joslyn, who played for Stanford in college before going pro as a member of the Seattle Storm and is host of NBC Sports Northwest's Talkin' Beavers podcast, couldn’t have been more ecstatic for her dad. Tres, who starred at Oregon State and finished his career first all-time in scoring, was taking in the sweet moment.
It’s been an emotional ride for Tinkle and the Beavers, who were not even forecasted to be in Indianapolis in the first place.
Prior to the 2020 season, Oregon State was picked to finish last in the Pac-12 conference. The Beavers shattered all expectations by finishing sixth in the conference, overcoming a 16-point deficit in the Pac-12 quarterfinals, and now, are just one of 16 teams standing in the NCAA Tournament.
Up next, No. 12 Oregon State will take on No. 8 seeded Loyola-Chicago in the battle of the underdogs.
The matchup has a special meaning to Tinkle, who grew up in Chicago where his father served as Vice President Dean of Students at Loyola-Chicago in the 1970s.
“He had two offices, one in the North Shore, one downtown at the Water Tower Place, some of my most fond memories were in the summer, going to his office at the Water Tower Place and he would have to do some work,” Tinkle explained. “He’d have people just kind of keep me out of trouble. I’d go up to the little gym, shoot some hoops and then we’d go to the Cubs games in the afternoon. I remember stories about George Ireland. I remember going to see him play when I was five or six years old...
Oregon State and Loyola-Chicago will meet in the Sweet 16 next weekend on Saturday, March 27 at 11:40 a.m. PT on CBS.