Ducks Welcome Inductees Into Hall Of Fame

EUGENE – One of the most successful coaches in University of Oregon history, a trio of former All-Americans and the school's first women's NCAA team champion highlight the inductees into the University's Athletics Hall of Fame as part of the school's 15th class during festivities spanning the weekend of Nov. 3-4.

The inductees, who will join the previous 142 elite individuals and 15 teams who have been selected as part of the athletics showcase that originated in 1992, will be formally honored at a Friday night banquet in the Casanova Center followed by an introduction during halftime of the weekend's Oregon-Washington football game.

Former Oregon men's gymnastics coach Bill Ballester, the Ducks' 1983 women's cross country team as well as Julie Cavanaugh (softball), Terry Maddox (baseball) and Anthony Newman (football) are the latest to be enshrined into the fraternity that recognizes the greatest contributors in the history of the school's athletic lore.

In addition, a pair of track & field standouts -- Lisa Martin and George Rasmussen -- who were voted into Oregon's Athletic Hall of Fame as part of the 2005 class but unable to attend last year's ceremonies, will be formally inducted as part of this year's activities.

Each spring a selection committee reviews the list of nominees submitted from among the Ducks' former athletes, coaches and administrators, with their eligibility for inclusion commencing 10 years following their departure from the University.

A limited number of tickets to the Friday night induction banquet are available to the general public for $50 each, and may be reserved by calling the Duck Athletic Fund office at (541) 346-5433.

2006 Oregon Hall-of-Fame Class

Bill Ballester - Men's Gymnastics Coach

Few University of Oregon coaches have ever enjoyed more success or were more respected in their field than the Ducks' four-time Pacific-8/Pacific-10 Conference coach of the year, who guided teams to five NCAA top-five finishes from 1977-81. The Indiana native and former Illinois high school coach accumulated a 132-18 record in his 10 seasons at Oregon while building a national power that claimed four consecutive conference team titles from 1977-80 and finished third in the 1980 national collegiate championships. Before he was finished, Bill Ballester coached 19 NCAA All-Americans, three Olympians and mentored the Ducks to a winning percentage of 88 percent. He was twice selected as NCAA Western Region coach of the year and was dedicated to developing the sport on the national level, coaching U.S. teams in international competition that included a defeat of the reigning world-champion Japanese national team. The driving force behind Eugene hosting the NCAA men's gymnastics championships in 1973 and ‘78, Ballester's Oregon teams also finished fourth in the country from 1977-79 and fifth in 1981.

Julie Cavanaugh - Softball

The 1991 first-team All-America first-baseman helped fuel the Ducks' NCAA Regional berths in 1989 and 1990 as well as the program's first NCAA Women's College World Series appearance in ‘89. Completing her collegiate tenure with a career batting average of .339, Julie Cavanaugh departed Oregon owning single-season school records in runs scored (44), stolen bases (24) as well as sharing the mark in hits (74). She also possessed the school's career standards for at bats (691), runs (115), stolen bases (58) and hits (234), with the latter record remaining 15 years later. As a senior, her totals for batting average, hits, runs and stolen bases also led the Pacific-10 Conference. Earning first-team all-conference and all-region accolades as a catcher in 1989 and as a first baseman the following two years, the former Sprague High School prep enjoyed a seven-for-nine hitting performance in a double-header sweep of Oregon State her senior season.

Terry Maddox - Baseball

One of only five Oregon first-team All-Americans in the sport, the three-time all-Northern Division team selection earned honors as a pitcher as a sophomore before duplicating the acclaim as an outfielder in 1956 and ‘57. His conference Northern Division-leading 7-1 record in 1955 established a single-season school mark for most wins and winning percentage (.875) while he led the Ducks with a 2.80 ERA. Offensively, Terry Maddox enjoyed his best season in 1956, batting .330 while driving in 28 RBIs. He finished with a career batting average of .321 while scoring 57 runs and driving in 50 to help lead Oregon to Northern League championships in 1955 and 1957. The team captain also compiled a career pitching record of 10-2 as well as a .972 fielding percentage and was voted to the NCAA District 8 All-Coast team as a collegiate senior. The Medford native sandwiched a two-year military stint between a four-year minor league baseball career.

Anthony Newman - Football

The three-year starter and 1987 honorable mention All-America defensive back was among the first high-profile in-state recruits of the 1980s who displayed the foresight and enjoyed the benefits of playing close to home. The Beaverton, Ore., standout and prep state player of the year helped pave the way for greater things to come in the future, tying for the team-lead in interceptions (3) as a sophomore while sharing Oregon's most outstanding player honors his senior year. Anthony Newman finished fourth on the team in tackles (78) in 1986 in addition to intercepting three of his four passes in one game against Oregon State. The Ducks' captain returned his final year to accumulate 85 tackles to earn Pacific-10 Conference first-team all-league accolades and be nominated for the annual Hayward Award as the state's top amateur athlete. Capping his collegiate career with 247 tackles, he played a significant role in helping the Ducks down both USC and Washington in the same season for the first time in 16 seasons before embarking on a 12-year NFL career.

1983 Women's Cross Country Team
Armed with four of their seven runners returning to the women's NCAA championships from previous years, the Oregon women claimed their first national collegiate title by outdistancing Stanford by a slim three-point margin. The Ducks tuned up for the battle by winning the Region VIII meet for the seventh time in eight tries by a 33-71 margin over the second-place Cardinal. Yet the national championship appearance would turn out to be a lot closer, with Oregon's fifth scorer proving to be the difference. Seldom would the program boast of such strength in numbers as junior Kathy Hayes (3rd), senior Lisa Martin (17th) and sophomore Kim Roth (27th) all claimed All-America honors in the 1983 championships, while junior Claudette Groenendaal (63rd) would win a pair of individual national track titles before concluding her collegiate career. Rounding out the championship contingent were freshmen Kim Ryan (41) and Birgit Petersen (72), while sophomore Gretchen Nelson (52nd) proved to be the team's difference in first and second place. For his efforts, head coach Tom Heinonen would be selected by his colleagues as NCAA women's national coach of the year.

2005 Oregon Hall-of-Fame Class

Lisa Martin - Track & Field

Oregon's three-time Olympian earned her way into the games in 1984, ‘88 and ‘92 in the marathon for her native Australia after helping lead the Ducks to their first women's NCAA championship in 1983. The three-time All-American was Oregon's second finisher in the collegiate cross country meet, in addition to earning AIAW honors on the track in the 3,000 in 1981 and finishing fourth in the 1983 NCAA 5,000. Before her collegiate career was completed, she had left her mark among the 10 fastest times in the program's history in five events, including the school record at 10,000 meters (33:12.1). The former 400-meter hurdler quickly transformed her talents to become one of the nation's premier collegiate women's distance runners. Yet it wasn't until she resumed her running career as a post-collegian that she became proficient in the marathon, finishing seventh in the 1984 Games in Los Angeles before winning the silver medal in the 1988 Olympiad in Seoul, South Korea.

George Rasmussen - Track and Field

Considered one of the nation's best pole vaulters of his time, the two-time NCAA champion (1947, 1948) was ranked third in the United States in the event in 1949 while ascending to a personal-best 14-4. The three-time NCAA All-American (1947, 1948, 1949) and two-time Pacific Coast Conference winner was annually rated among the country's top 10 vaulters each year from 1947-50, yet consistently fared better in head-to-head competition than his national ranking. He placed second in the USA national meet in both 1949 and 1950 (tie) with identical 14-0 marks despite being ranked third and sixth, respectively, in the U.S., and finished among the top five finishers in the national championships four out of five years from 1947 through 1951.

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