The Skip Bertman's Tigers coming back to beat Stanford for the 2000 baseball national championship; Bert Jones' masterful drive in the last three minutes to beat Ole Miss in 1972 without – literally without – a second to spare.
Within two years – coinciding with
the golden anniversary of the founding of the Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame –
there just may be a physical showcase for fans to relive memorable moments in
the state's rich athletic annals: the
As it is, in the idyllic garden
As envisioned, the museum will move from a quaint storehouse of notable athletic achievement to a 21st Century entertainment and research powerhouse.
You would think in a state like
Louisiana it would almost be mandatory to house such an exhibition hall, seeing
as how sports is one area the state really does excel, towering on a per-capita
basis over such more populated provinces as Ohio, Florida, Illinois. To many
inducted through the years, induction in the Louisiana Hall is the highest honor
accorded any state athlete outside of Cooperstown or
Almost everyone agrees the museum
is a worthwhile project – or at least they did before a couple of windy ole gals
by the names of Katrina and Rita. A year ago the Legislature approved $7.6
million for the building of a combination Sports Hall of Fame Museum and the
That was, of course, put on hold after the devastation of the storms, when all non-essential capital outlay projects were placed on the backburner. But, in June, the Legislature approved the funding, then the bonding commission approved and earmarked its approval of $600,000 for planning and architect fees.
Now, the Hall of Fame awaits approval, expected within the next two months, by the commission for what is called "a line of credit'' for a portion of the remaining $6.5 million for construction to commence.
A month ago, Doug Ireland, executive director of the Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame, categorized the chances of success after years of trying to move the project forward as "first-and-goal inside the 5.''
"Now,'' he said, "it's second-and-goal inside the 2.''
When it's complete, the Hall of
Fame and the museum will be a showcase of not only
Fittingly, one of LSU's all-time football heroes, Gaynell "Gus'' Tinsley, was part of the first class when the Sports Hall of Fame was created in 1958. The other inductees in that inaugural class were Tony Canzoneri, a world boxing champion in three divisions, and Mel Ott, who also made it to another Hall of Fame, baseball's in Cooperstown.
It would be nice if two years from now we celebrate the golden anniversary of their inductions in a structure worthy of their achievements.
Marty Mule' can be reached at MJM981@Bellsouth.net