Ashland University's Hall of Fame will add seven members in the fall of 2019, and the latest class brings with it quite an impressive resume.
The 2019 Hall of Fame includes Alanna Buurma Bedingfield (women's basketball), Morris Furman (football), Josh Gaub (baseball), Bill Goldring (athletic director), Reggie Johnson (wrestling), Bryan Vickers (track and field) and Lynsey Warren (volleyball/women's basketball). Mary Miller is the 2019 Eagle Forever Award recipient.
The 35th annual Ashland University Hall of Fame Induction and Student-Athlete of the Year Recognition will be Oct. 12 at 9:30 a.m. in the Faculty Room at the John C. Myers Convocation Center, prior to the Eagle football team's Homecoming game vs. Davenport at 1 p.m. at Jack Miller Stadium/Martinelli Field. Reservations for the recognition can be made by contacting the AU athletic department at 419-289-5441.
Information on this year's Hall of Fame inductees follows:
ALANNA BUURMA BEDINGFIELD (women's basketball, 2000-04) – Bedingfield was one of the key players during Ashland University's women's basketball program's first NCAA Division II tournament run, and is one of just seven players in program history to post at least 1,200 career points (1,238) and 700 career rebounds (756).
In addition to ranking 13th all-time in points and seventh all-time in rebounds at Ashland, Bedingfield is the second-best free-throw shooter (83.6) and has the fourth-best field-goal percentage (55.2) of any Eagle women's basketball player. She was first-team All-Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference twice, and All-GLIAC Academic three times.
In those two Midwest Regional games in March of 2004, Bedingfield became the first AU women's basketball player to record a D-II postseason double-double, and did it twice (19 points, 12 rebounds vs. Ferris State; 14 points, 12 rebounds vs. Lake Superior State).
MORRIS FURMAN (football, 1988-91) – In 1991, Ashland University's defense was the best in all of Division II, allowing 195.5 yards per game. One of the big reasons why was Furman, a defensive end who, in just nine games, compiled 56 total tackles, six sacks and an interception in garnering second-team All-Midwest Intercollegiate Football Conference honors.
Furman's biggest individual season came as a junior in 1990, when he recorded an MIFC-high 13 sacks, still the sixth-best total in program history, and 85 total tackles. That fall, he was named Kodak first-team All-American, MIFC Defensive Lineman of the Year and first-team All-MIFC.
Recording 22 career sacks as an Eagle, Furman's total is 11th-best in program history.
JOSH GAUB (baseball, 2001-04) – Not only is Gaub one of the best catchers in Eagle baseball history, he's also the most durable, as his 207 games over a four-season span will attest.
Gaub's statistics have stood the test of time, as he is in the top five in Ashland baseball history in career batting average (fifth, .390), hits (fourth, 247), runs scored (third, 200), getting hit by pitches (first, 67), doubles (fourth, 46) and games played (fifth, 207).
A standout both on the field and in the classroom, Gaub landed second-team Academic All-American honors in 2004, was a two-time all-region selection, was named GLIAC Player of the Year in 2003, and was named All-GLIAC three times (first-team in 2003-04, second-team in 2002).
BILL GOLDRING (athletic director, 1998-2014) – Goldring led the Eagles into a new era of national prominence during his tenure as AU's athletic director, as evidenced by the athletic program's seven straight top-10 Division II Directors' Cup finishes from 2008-14, as well as the first D-II team national championship (women's basketball, 2012-13) in Ashland athletics history.
Under Goldring's leadership, Ashland teams made 68 NCAA postseason appearances and won 14 regional championships, and the athletic department became a destination for the highest competition in Division II, as it played host to NCAA Championships in softball, wrestling, swimming and diving, and men's and women's cross country.
Ashland's athletic department grew during Goldring's time in the top spot, adding women's tennis and women's golf, building the Dwight Schar Athletic Complex and renovating Kates Gymnasium. Goldring twice was named D-II Northeast Region athletic director of the year, and in the classroom, 27 Eagles earned Academic All-American honors while he was athletic director.
REGGIE JOHNSON (wrestling, 1979-83) – To say that Johnson was a pioneer for Eagle wrestling would be an understatement, as he was the program's first four-time All-American – there's only been four in the near-60-year history of Ashland grappling.
Johnson worked his way up the Division II ladder at 118 pounds, placing fifth at nationals as a freshman, third as a sophomore, fourth as a junior, and, finally, national runner-up as a senior in 1983. Those placements helped the Eagles as a team to two of the highest finishes in program history – sixth place in 1981, and fifth place in 1982.
With 115 career wins, Johnson still ranks in a tie for fifth in Ashland history, and he was the Eagles' all-time wins leader at the time of his graduation. Johnson's 38 victories in 1981-82 and 37 wins in 1980-81 are third- and tied-for-fourth-best in Ashland wrestling annals.
BRYAN VICKERS (track and field, 2003-08) – The line of high-quality Ashland University throwers is a long one, and Vickers certainly earned his place among the best, winning four Division II championships (three in the shot put, one in the weight throw) and earning 15 All-American citations between the shot, weight and discus.
Vickers' list of honors includes U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) Men's Indoor Field Athlete of the Year and GLIAC Indoor Men's Field Athlete of the Meet in 2008, GLIAC Outdoor Men's Field Athlete of the Meet in 2007, and GLIAC Outdoor Men's Freshman of the Meet in 2005.
On the all-time D-II shot put rolls, Vickers remains No. 6 indoors (19.60 meters/64-feet-3¾) and No. 7 outdoors (19.84 meters/65-feet-1¼).
LYNSEY WARREN (volleyball, 2004-07; women's basketball, 2005-06, 2007-09) – Modern collegiate athletics has all but done away with two-sport athletes, but Warren continues to rank as one of the best in the history of Ashland athletics, having excelled for four seasons in volleyball and three in women's basketball.
Warren played in five Division II postseasons – all four in volleyball and one in basketball. She remains the Eagle volleyball pacesetter in career assists (5,610), single-season assists (1,520) and single-match assists (71), and garnered two All-American (third-team in 2007, honorable mention in 2006), three all-region and two first-team All-GLIAC awards. Warren was the region's Freshman of the Year in 2004, was Academic All-District in 2007 and All-GLIAC Academic in 2006.
As a basketball player, Warren earned second-team All-GLIAC recognition as a senior, and was All-GLIAC Academic twice. Warren also has the distinction of being Ashland's first female GLIAC Commissioner's Award recipient.
Miller, a loyal Ashland athletics supporter for nearly 50 years, is a 1971 Ashland College graduate, and received her Master's from AC in 1984. She taught in Ashland's college of business for nearly 30 years, and she won the Taylor Teaching Award and The Raymond W. Bixler Teaching Award.
The new Mary C. Miller Student-Athlete Enrichment Center will be adjacent to the new Rinehart Room on the second floor of AU's Physical Education Center.