Vanderbilt Athletics Announces Inaugural Hall of Fame Class

Who’s your all-time favorite Commodore?

That’s the question the university asked alumni, fans and friends of the varsity athletic program when it set about creating the new Athletics Hall of Fame to recognize and honor outstanding achievement and celebrate its (black and) golden sporting heritage.

Hundreds of nominations were reviewed and voted upon by the senior athletic administration team—a fun but difficult task spanning more than a century’s worth of achievements. Individuals are not eligible until four years after they last participated in intercollegiate athletics. Selection was based on these criteria:

Commodore Greats: Athletes who have brought recognition and prominence to the university and themselves by their athletic accomplishments as undergraduates. Criteria to be considered included All-American and All-SEC honors and exceptional leadership.

Distinguished Letterwinners: Athletes who have made major contributions to the athletic program through time, effort, interest, through many years of service, or have otherwise distinguished themselves.

Lifetime Achievement: Individuals, coaches, athletic officials, staff members and other university officials who were not athletes at Vanderbilt but rendered outstanding service to the intercollegiate athletic program through time, effort, interest and service.

Vanderbilt held a special Hall of Fame weekend of events Sept. 12–13, capped by an induction banquet Friday evening and the Class of 2008 presentation during halftime of the Rice football game.

The inaugural Hall of Fame inductees are:

Chantelle Anderson

Chantelle Anderson, BS’03 (basketball, 1999–2003), is the most decorated women’s basketball player in school history and the youngest Hall of Fame inductee. She was the Commodores’ only two-time Kodak All-American, is the school’s leading scorer, and was voted Vanderbilt’s Female Athlete of the Year three times. She was the second player chosen in the WNBA draft in 2003, and has played for the Sacramento Monarchs and San Antonio Silver Stars.

Peggy Harmon Brady

Peggy Harmon Brady, BE’72 (golf, 1968–1972), came to Vanderbilt after winning the USGA Junior Championship at a time when the university had no varsity teams for women. During her sophomore year Athletic Director Jess Neely asked her to represent Vanderbilt at the National Intercollegiate in Athens, Ga., where she placed third. In 1971 she won medalist honors at the Intercollegiate held at Singing Hills in San Diego. She and her daughter, Chris, also a Commodore golfer, are the only mother/daughter All-Americans in Vanderbilt history.

John Hall

John Hall, BE’55 (football, 1951–1954), a self-described overachiever on and off the football field, became Vanderbilt’s first academic All-American in 1954. The only Vanderbilt student-athlete elected to the CoSIDA (College Sports Information Directors of America) Academic Hall of Fame, he later became chairman and chief executive officer of Ashland Inc. in Kentucky. Hall is a member of the Vanderbilt Board of Trust and served as its president in 1995.

Roy Kramer

Roy Kramer (director of athletics, 1978–1990) energized Vanderbilt’s athletic department with new facilities and popular coaches. He oversaw renovation of Vanderbilt Stadium and the McGugin Center, brought SEC and NCAA men’s basketball tournaments to Memorial Gym, and merged the women’s and men’s athletic departments. Kramer later became commissioner of the Southeastern Conference, overseeing its expansion from 10 to 12 member institutions and the inception of the SEC Football Championship game, and he was instrumental in the creation of the Bowl Championship Series. He was honored by the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame in 2003 as a Distinguished American Sportsman.

Clyde Lee

Clyde Lee, BA’70 (basketball, 1963–1966), was a first-team All-America center in 1966, two-time SEC Player of the Year, and a member of the NCAA All-Tournament team in 1965. Game attendance boomed during those years, and Memorial Gym’s second and third tiers have been called “the balconies that Clyde built.” Lee followed his college career with an 11-year stint in the NBA. He was the first Vanderbilt athlete to have his jersey retired.

Dan McGugin

Dan McGugin (head football coach, 1904–1934) is the winningest football coach in Vanderbilt history. He compiled an overall record of 197-55-19 and was elected to the National Football Hall of Fame in 1951. McGugin coached four undefeated teams between 1904 and 1922.

John Rich

John Rich, BA’51 (football/baseball, 1945–1951), came to Vanderbilt from Mississippi as a scholarship football player and also lettered in baseball. Founder of Delta Coals in Nashville, he joined the Vanderbilt Board of Trust in 1988 and was named trustee, emeritus, in 2003. During his time on the board, he served on the steering committee for the Athletics Campaign and provided leadership for the expansion of McGugin Center and construction of Vanderbilt Stadium and the John Rich Football Training Complex.

Fred Russell

Fred Russell, ’27 (baseball, 1925–1926), was a nationally renowned and respected sports journalist with the Nashville Banner newspaper for 70 years. He was the first recipient of the Grantland Rice Memorial Award in 1955 and was honored with the naming of the Russell-Rice Scholarship, presented annually to a high school senior showing outstanding promise in journalism. The press boxes in Vanderbilt Stadium and Hawkins Field are named in his honor. He died in 2003 at the age of 96, having retired just four years earlier.

June Stewart

June Stewart (administration, 1973–2001) joined the Vanderbilt athletic department as a secretary in the sports information and National Commodore Club offices. During her tenure she was promoted to senior women’s sports administrator and was elected the first female president of CoSIDA. She later was named associate director of athletics and inducted into the Tennessee Sports Hall of Fame and the Tennessee Sports Writers Hall of Fame.

Ryan Tolbert Jackson

Ryan Tolbert Jackson, BS’98 (track and field, 1994–1998), is the only Vanderbilt athlete to claim an individual NCAA championship, winning the 1997 400-meters in a time of 54.54, a record at that time. Vanderbilt’s highest internal team honor, the Tolbert Cup, named in her honor, is presented annually to the varsity squad exhibiting the best combination of athletic success, academic achievement and community service. She holds seven school outdoor records and three indoor records.

Bill Wade

Bill Wade, BA’52 (football, 1949–1951), made the cover of Look magazine as a Vanderbilt player and was named SEC Player of the Year and a second-team All-American in 1951. He was the No. 1 pick in the 1952 NFL draft, taken by the Los Angeles Rams. He ended his 14-year professional career after leading the Chicago Bears to the 1963 world championship.

Perry Wallace

Perry Wallace, BE’70 (basketball, 1966–1970), was the first African-American athlete to receive a basketball scholarship in the Southeastern Conference. His jersey is one of only three in school history to be retired. He remains Vanderbilt’s second-leading rebounder and ranks 35th in scoring, having played just three seasons. Wallace won the SEC Sportsmanship Trophy after a vote by league players in 1970. He is an inductee in the Tennessee Sports Hall of Fame and was named by the National Association of Basketball Coaches to its five-man Silver Anniversary All-America team.

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