Written by LaMarcus Wilkerson, Staff Writer
VSU honored eight of its greatest athletes at the school’s 20th annual Hall of Fame induction Ceremony at 10 a.m. on Feb. 13 in the Student Union Ballroom. The event, hosted by athletic director Herb Reinhard, included a ceremony and brunch for those in attendance.
Members of the class include Brandon Decker, Kristina Ely, Robert Hagan, Leos Jelinek, Hal Humme, Coretta Bloom, Dominique Ross and 2007 Blazer football team.
Decker was recognized for having the highest career batting average (.413) and slugging percentage (.792) in the history of VSU baseball.
On the softball end, Kristina Ely made first team as an All-Gulf South Conference player twice and finished with a .327 career batting average.
Robert Hagan was honored for his unwavering loyalty to the program. Along with Hagan, Leos Jelinek contributed to the tennis team from 2007-2009 and upgraded VSU’s reputation as being a top competitor in the Gulf South Conference.
With 1,659 career points, Coretta Bloom was celebrated for being the eighth-highest scorer for the program.
In the football world, former coach Hal Mumme was recognized. Reinhard’s first hire, Mumme produced a 40-17-1 record from 1992-1996, placing him top three for most wins in school history.
“I’ve had a lot of jobs and I’ve bounced around a lot but I really enjoyed this job here more than any of them,” said Mumme.
Honoree Dominique Ross played running back from 1992-94 and rushed for 3,237 yards during his school career. Ross went on to play for the Dallas Cowboys.
The only full unit to be honored was the 2007 football team. David Dean’s group pieced together a 13-1 season capped off with a national championship.
According to the Valdosta Daily Times, Dean appropriately addressed his team directly.
“The first meeting we had, I challenged you guys to leave a legacy,” said Dean. “How would you be remembered, how do you want to be remembered? They all said they wanted to be remembered as champions. Congratulations. You are. You accepted that challenge. You’re a national champion and you’re a Hall of Fame member.”