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Contact: Christine Payton Oct. 10, 2011
(337) 482-6397, payton@louisiana.edu
 
2011 ATHLETIC HALL OF FAME INDUCTEES
 
The University of Louisiana at Lafayette and the Ragin’ Cajuns Lettermen Club announced the 2011 Athletic Hall of Fame inductees. They are Bill Bryan – tennis; Cheryl Longeway Hogan – softball; Bryon Starks – basketball; and Orlando Thomas – football.

On Friday, Oct. 14 from 6 – 8 p.m. a reception and meet-and-greet will be held for the inductees at the Student Union Art Gallery. The four former student-athletes will be officially inducted into the 2011 Hall of Fame during halftime of the football game on Saturday, Oct. 15.

Bill Bryan (tennis) was a 4-year letterman in tennis for UL Lafayette from 1977-1980. Bryan was a 5-time singles/doubles All-Southland Conference selection; ranks 2nd in total career wins; 2nd in doubles career wins; 3rd in singles career wins; and never lost a dual match in all four years as a Ragin’ Cajun. His post-UL Lafayette career continued as a mentor and coach where he was named USPTA Pro of the Year twice; coached the Jr. Davis Cup for Louisiana twice; coached Brother Martin High School for eight years; and served as Louisiana Tennis Association (LTA) Chairman for many years. In 1997, Bryan and his family were named the Southern Tennis Family of the Year. He received his degree in 1980.

Cheryl Longeway Hogan (softball) was a 2-time softball letterman as a pitcher at UL Lafayette from 1995-1996 after transferring from Cal State Fullerton. Hogan was a 2-time 1st Team NFCA All-American; 2-time All-Louisiana selection; 2-time All-South Region selection; and the 1996 Louisiana Player of the Year. She was also named to the 1995 College World Series all-tournament team and threw a no hitter against Michigan in the Series. Hogan ended her career at UL Lafayette with 32 shutouts and 486 strikeouts. She received a degree in General Studies in 1996.

Byron Starks (basketball) was a 4-time letterman in basketball for UL Lafayette from 1992-1995. Starks was a 2-time Sun Belt 1st Team All-Conference selection; lead the Cajuns to two NCAA tournament bids; is currently ranked 6th in 3-point percentage for a season; 10th in career steals; and 10th in career scoring with 1, 592 points. Following his stellar career at UL Lafayette, Starks played one year of professional ball in the Netherlands and then returned to the USA to begin what has become a coaching legacy – including being named LHSAA Coach of the Year in 2006, 2008 and 2011. In 2003, he was inducted into the LHSAA Hall of Fame. In 2010, he started Champions International – a youth mentoring program. Starks received a degree in General Studies with a concentration in Health and P.E. in 1996.

Orlando Thomas (football) was a 4-year letterman in football as defensive back from 1991-1994. Thomas was named 2nd Team All American in 1993 when he led the nation in interceptions. He was named to the 1st Team All Big West in 1993 and 1994 and received All Big West Defensive Player of the Year honors in 1993 and 1994. Thomas finished his career at UL Lafayette ranked 2nd in tackles with 347 and 3rd in interceptions with 18. He continued his football career with the Minnesota Vikings where he played for seven seasons and recorded 476 tackles, 22 interceptions and earned a trip to the Pro Bowl. He returned to school after his successful NFL career and earned his degree in 2006.

The purpose of the UL Lafayette Hall of Fame is to give recognition to those athletes who have made a significant contribution to the good name of the university by demonstrating exceptional ability and sportsmanship on the playing fields, commendable scholarship in the classroom, high quality leadership on the campus, and who after leaving the university have established a personal reputation for character and citizenship in the community which they reside.

“ Our goal is to remind each new generation of athletes of the tradition they must uphold and the ideals that they should strive for while they are wearing the UL Lafayette uniforms,” said Ragin’ Cajuns Lettermen Club President Tom Carroll (UL Lafayette Baseball ’71-’74).

The Ragin’ Cajuns Lettermen Club Alumni Chapter is comprised of men and women who lettered in athletics while they were students at SLI/USL/UL Lafayette. The Ragin’ Cajuns Lettermen Club is a constituent chapter of the UL Lafayette Alumni Association and it retains close ties to the Athletic Department.

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Document last revised Tuesday, October 11, 2011 8:26 AM

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