Bears announce 2014 Hall of Fame Class
By HEATHER KENNEDY
GREELEY – The 2014 Northern Colorado Athletics Hall of Fame induction class contains a wide range of talent and abilities. It is a balanced class of three male athletes, two female athletes, a significant contributor and a storied team.
Dr. Gilbert Anderson (team physician/contributor), Keith Bailey (baseball), Jill Fadenrecht (basketball/track & field), Brian Kula (track & field), Robert Popp (gymnastics) and Emily Russell (golf) have all be elected to the Hall of Fame as individuals, while the 1972-73 men’s swimming & diving team concludes the 20th induction class.
The induction ceremony will take place on February 28 in the University Center Ballrooms and the class will also be recognized at halftime of the men’s basketball game on March 1. For further information on attending the ceremony, please contact Julie Hill at 970.351.2979 or Julie.firstname.lastname@example.org.
Anderson, Contributor, Team Physician
Dr. Anderson served as one of the team physicians for Northern Colorado athletics for 30 years, including serving as the head physician for several years, and set up the physician’s network currently in use by the athletic training department. He was extremely involved in developing the partnership between UNC and North Colorado Medical Center. Anderson spent many hours educating students in the athletic training room as well as getting other area physicians involved with the University on top of his successful orthopaedic surgical practice.
Still the all-time career record holder for victories, Keith Bailey is probably best known for his 8 2/3 inning win over Arizona in the first game of the 1974 District 7 Playoffs, which helped lead the Bears to their 10th College World Series appearance. Bailey went on to win 30 games in the Blue & Gold and pitch a school record 338 1/3 innings. He also still ranks 10th in ERA (4.10) and tied for third with 211 strikeouts. Bailey is still involved in the game he loves, umpiring at the NCAA Division I and II levels.
Fadenrecht, Basketball, Track & Field, 1999-03
Jill Fadenrecht still owns the single season and career records at Northern Colorado in blocked shots with 79 and 210, respectively. In addition to setting the record for games started on the hardwood, she also was an All-American in track & field, finishing tied for seventh place in the high jump at the 2001 NCAA Outdoor Championships. Fadenrecht ranked among the nation’s leaders in blocked shots in both 2002 (10th) and 2003 (12th) and also worked in the athletic department while a student-athlete. She continues to rank third in school history in rebounds with 800.
Track & Field, Football, 1991-96
A two-time All-American, Brian Kula finished fourth in the decathlon at the 1996 NCAA Outdoor Championships after placing fifth in the 55 meter hurdles during the 1994 Indoor Championships. He is still the school record holder in the 110 meter hurdles (14.03) and held the NCC record for most points scored in a single championship with 32. In 1996, Kula was named the USATFCA Regional Athlete of the Year, as well as the NCC Athlete and UNC Honor Athlete of the Year. In his freshman season, Kula was also a member of the football team. Kula is currently the head track & field coach as well as an assistant athletic director at Valor Christian High School.
One of only two NCAA Champions in Northern Colorado history in men’s gymnastics, Robert Popp won the still rings NCAA Division II title in 1973 as a senior. He also finished in third place in the University Division, earning All-American Honors for the second-straight year. As a senior, Popp won the Rocky Mountain Open, Tucson Open and NCAA East-West All-Star Meet in rings. In his junior campaign, he earned All-American after finishing sixth in the College Division on the still rings.
Another All-American for the Bears, Emily Russell earned her honors at the 2003 NCAA Women’s Golf Championship. In 2003, she tied for third place at the NCAA Championship after placing second at the NCC Championship. She was also a First-Team All-Conference selection in 2002 and a 2001 Second-Team pick. Russell began as a walk-on to the golf team, but surpassed everyone’s expectations, finishing 32nd at the NCAA Championships as a freshman. She went on to earn All-Independent honors as a senior as the Bears began the transition to Division I.
Swimming & Diving Team
Eight members of the team qualified for the NCAA Division II Championships -- the most ever in Northern Colorado history. All eight who qualified earned All-American honors. Tom Bryant finished fourth in the 200 fly and sixth in the 100 fly, setting school records in both events and was a member of the record setting 400 medley relay team. Tim Ebuna was a team captain, as was Hal Christensen, who set the school records in the 50 and 100 free, earning All-American honors in both. Stan Benson again earned All-American in the 100 and 200 backstroke, while Bryan Smith set the school records in those two events and was on both 400 relay teams. Dan Lanini earned All-American in 400 IM, 200 fly and the 400 free relay, which also set the school record. Jeff Graunke was on the 400 free relay and competed in the 200 IM and Jack Olsson competed in both the 100 and 200 breaststroke and swam on the 400 medley relay. Other members of the team included Bruce Johnson, Dick Monfort and Mike Shoop.