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Six Named to BU Athletic Hall of Fame

Terriers to be inducted tomorrow

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On December 16, 1916, the Terrier men’s basketball team became the first BU athletics program to compete at the varsity level. And while thousands of students have played varsity sports over the past nearly 100 years, only 231 BU athletes have been chosen for the University’s Athletic Hall of Fame.

The ranks of that elite group will grow to 237 tomorrow, when the University inducts six new members into the Hall of Fame. They will join the likes of Terrier football great Harry Agganis (SED’54) and members of the legendary “Miracle on Ice” U.S. hockey team that beat the seemingly invincible Russians and went on to take home the gold in the 1980 Olympics at Lake Placid: team captain Mike Eruzione (SED’77), director of development for BU athletics, Jack O’Callahan (CAS’79), Jim Craig (SED’79), and Dave Silk (CAS’80, MET’92, GSM’93).

Drew Marrochello, deputy director of athletics, says induction into the Hall of Fame is an honor because the process is highly selective.

“A lot of other athletics halls around the country might include people who never played for their institution, but because they’ve gone on to be an NFL coach or work in athletics, they’re honored in the athletic hall of fame,” Marrochello says. “Ours really focuses on the athletic accomplishments of our inductees while they were undergraduate student-athletes.”

Michael Lynch, assistant vice president and director of athletics, says that the honor is reserved for those alumni who really shined in their sport.

“Candidates who may not have numbers that jump off the page, but who have made another impact for the institution are considered, but typically, it’s really for the best athletes we’ve ever had,” Lynch says.

While each of tomorrow’s inductees played a different sport, they are united by their athletic prowess.

Perhaps the most notable name among the inductees is Nick Bone (SMG’98), the all-time leading scorer in BU men’s soccer. Bone scored 143 points (61 goals, 21 assists) in four seasons as a Terrier and led the 1994 team to a 16-0-1 record and a number-one national ranking. He was voted the National Freshman of the Year that season, and would go on to earn three All-Conference First Team honors during his career. Lynch describes Bone as “the best offensive player in the history of men’s soccer” at BU.

Carnell Henderson (SED’95) is the third member of the Terriers’ undefeated 1993 football team to be selected for induction into the Hall of Fame. One of the best wide receivers in the program’s history, Henderson finished his career second in receiving yards (2,759), second in touchdown receptions (24), and third in receptions (188). He was named to the Sports Network’s Third Team All-America squad as a senior.

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Runner Troy Billings (SMG’83), field hockey midfielder Jessica Alcorta (SED’00), and women’s lacrosse player Chrissy Lombard (SED’01) won a bevy of awards as undergraduate student-athletes. Photos by BU Athletics

Christine Stief (SMG’95), who won 6 All-America awards for track and field, enters the Hall of Fame with 12 individual America East titles and 7 conference Scholar-Athlete of the Year awards. A native of Rosstal, Germany, Stief performed as a two-time national All-Academic selection in cross-country, finished her career with a 4-0 record in the indoor mile run, and led BU to four America East cross-country titles.

Troy Billings (SMG’83) is being honored tomorrow for the impressive contributions he made to the men’s track and field program. Billings left BU as the University’s record holder in the mile and two-mile run, and was named team MVP as a sophomore in 1981. He also earned All-America honors at the NCAA Cross Country Championships in 1982, the first Terrier to do so in nearly three decades.

A First Team All-American in 1999, field hockey midfielder Jessica Alcorta (SED’00) started 80 of 81 games and finished her career as the program’s fourth-leading assists scorer, with 40. Alcorta earned First Team America East All-Conference and All-Tournament Team honors in each of her last three seasons and led BU to top 13 national rankings in 1996 and 1999.

The final inductee, Chrissy Lombard (SED’01), enters the Hall of Fame as the only lacrosse player in America East history to earn Player of the Year honors three times. Lombard arguably left BU women’s lacrosse as the best offensive player in the program’s history, finishing her career first in points (242), goals (180), and assists (62). She earned three All-America honors and four All-Conference First Team honors during her career as well.

Marrochello says the wide array of programs represented in each year’s induction is the result of the Hall of Fame’s open nomination process.

“These are sports that sometimes don’t get the notoriety or visibility, but whose student-athletes are absolutely vital to our history and our institution,” he says. “The 2012 class offers a wide representation of our athletic offerings.”

That was not always the case. Of the 231 Hall of Fame members, 91—nearly 40 percent—come from the football or men’s ice hockey programs. The combined men’s and women’s track and field teams place third with 19 inductees; BU has also honored 52 multisport athletes.

Lynch says a change in the selection process, which now allows more alumni to nominate a former student-athlete for induction, has led to a diversification of candidates in recent years.

“We can bring forward people who have had impactful careers here, perhaps in sports that the newspapers or TV don’t pay a lot of attention to,” Lynch says. “From my perspective, that’s where the Hall of Fame is doing its best work.”

The six inductees will be presented with a Hall of Fame signature red jacket at a banquet in the Metcalf Trustees Ballroom. They will reminisce about their years at BU before an audience of  family, friends, and other all-time athletic greats.

Marrochello says emotions tend to run high.

“It’s certainly a great gathering and a celebration of history, but it’s more than just a celebration of the six new Hall of Famers,” Marrochello says. “It’s a celebration of BU itself.”

The Boston University Hall of Fame Induction will take place on Saturday, May 12, at 5:30 p.m. in the Metcalf Trustees Ballroom, One Silber Way. Attendance is by invitation only.

Ben Carsley can be reached at bcarsley@bu.edu.

1 Comments

One Comment on Six Named to BU Athletic Hall of Fame

  • Sam Stone on 05.11.2012 at 8:51 am

    Would love to see a follow-up article detailing: “Where are they now?” or what they’ve done since leaving BU…

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