2005 inductees to be honored at September 2nd dinner
LEXINGTON, Va. – Six former VMI athletes will be officially inducted into the VMI Sports Hall of Fame Friday night, Sept. 2 at a dinner held at Cameron Hall. In addition, a former basketball coach and radio broadcaster will be inducted posthumously as well. The dinner event will highlight a weekend of Hall of Fame festivities that include recognition during a full review Corps of Cadets parade Saturday morning Sept. 3 and a ceremony held at halftime of the VMI-Davidson game later that afternoon.
The 2005 inductees are Charlie Branch '95 (Wrestling), Henry Cronin '64 (Track), Ryan Glynn '96 (Baseball), Matt Ott '92 (Lacrosse and Soccer), Kelly Raber '84 (Football), Pete Ramsey '72 (Football) and special citation presented posthumously to former VMI basketball coach and radio commentator Louis "Weenie" Miller.
2005 INDUCTEE CAPSULES
CHARLIE BRANCH ’95 – WRESTLING
Became VMI’s first wrestling All-American under current NCAA selection format...was the Institute’s all-time leaders in wins with a 117-26-1 career record...became the first VMI wrestler to win four Southern Conference championships (1992-1995) and the third in the history of the Southern Conference to win four straight titles...also the first and only Keydet wrestler to win four conference titles in a combination of two weight classes (one at the 134 lb. weight class and three at the 142 lb. weight class)...spent most of his career ranked in the top 10 nationally...twice named outstanding wrestler of the year in the Southern Conference...was 23-6 at 142 lbs. as a senior and 26-7 overall...he attained All-America status in 1994 when he placed fourth at 142 lbs. at the NCAA Division I Championships in Chapel Hill...had a banner year in 1993-94 when he posted a 35-4 record also won the Virginia Intercollegiate Championships and the prestigious Bloomsburg Invitational and was also named outstanding wrestler in those tournament...currently the head wrestling coach at Eastern Michigan University.
HENRY J. CRONIN ’64- TRACK
Excelled in the hurdles for Coach Cormack’s successful track teams in the 60’s...earned all-conference designation seven times with two firsts, three second, and two third place finishes in conference indoor and outdoor meets...won the 1964 indoor 70-yard high hurdles with a time of 8.8 seconds (team won the SC title)...captured the 1964 SC outdoor 120 yard high hurdles with a time of 14.7...captained the indoor 1963-64 squad that won Southern Conference and state championships...won the 330 Intermediate hurdles against tough regional competition at the Colonial Relays in Williamsburg in both 1963 and 1964..won the 1964 120-yard High Hurdles in the outdoor state meet and also won the 330 yard Intermediate Hurdles...winner of the Hardin-Massie award for track excellence and exemplifying the “Spirit of VMI”
RYAN GLYNN ’96 – BASEBALL
Was the class of ’96, but his last competition was the spring of 1995 which would make him eligible for consideration under charter 10-year rule guidelines...was the first VMI Baseball alumnus to make the major leagues, appearing first for the Texas Rangers in 1999... was a two-time All-Southern Conference selection, and earned the league's first team all-conference and all-tournament honors in 1995 as well as first team all-state recognition... During Glynn's VMI baseball career, the Keydets set then school season records for wins in both 1993 and 1994 and advanced to the championship round of the Southern Conference baseball tournament in 1993. In 1995, Glynn led the team with 14 homers and drove in 58 runs - then the second best single season marks by a VMI baseball player... Glynn finished his collegiate career ranked second on the school list in RBI's (126), triples (9), and was third in homers (31). It was as a pitcher that Glynn developed into a major league prospect during his college career. He was clocked as high as 95 m.p.h. early in his sophomore season, and drew unprecedented attention from scouts during his junior season of 1995. Glynn whiffed 86 batters in '95, which stood as the second best season mark by a VMI pitcher...Glynn was selected by the Texas Rangers in the fourth round of the June, 1995 draft, and was the 94th selection overall - the highest draft pick in VMI baseball history. Glynn's signing bonus contract with the Rangers allowed him to complete his senior year at VMI and graduate with a B.A. in Economics and Business in 1996...he has also pitched with the Toronto Blue Jays in 2004 and Oakland Athletics in 2005, and is currently with Oakland’s AAA affiliate in Sacramento.
MATT OTT '92 - LACROSSE
VMI's school record holder in saves in a season with 314 in 1992...three-time team MVP (1990-91-92)...ranked in the national top four in save percentage as a first classman in 1992 - a year in which VMI attained a national ranking in the top 25 during a portion of the season...compiled 729 career saves which was surpassed only by Ryan Olsen's 768 from 1993-96...served as team tri-captain in 1992...his .648 save percentage ranked fifth nationally in 1991...had a goalie's dream come true when he scored a goal against Guilford College in 1991...was one of the few VMI athletes to captain two sports as a first classman - was a back and co-captain of the 1991 VMI Soccer team and was a second-team All-Southern Conference selection that year.
KELLY RABER '84 -FOOTBALL - Played only two years of varsity football, but led VMI to some of the most memorable victories in its football history...transferred into VMI from Hudson Valley junior college in 1981 and won the starting quarterback job that fall... led VMI in 1981 to its best winning percentage in 21 years as the Keydets posted a 6 3 1 record and logged the first and only win over Army (14 7) and a 6 0 win at Virginia Tech which stands as VMI's last win over a I A foe...threw for 1,450 yards in 1981 (6th highest in school history) and broke the then school record for total offense in a season with 1,459 yards...selected first team All State in 1981 by the Roanoke Times & World News...threw for 1,256 yards in 1982 and led the team again in total offense with 1,426 yards...named 1982 honorable mention All State...threw for 205 yards in both the 1981 and 1982 games against William & Mary...despite playing only two seasons, Raber ranks as VMI's 6th all time leading passer (2,706 yards) and fifth in 5th in completions (225)...also lettered in baseball in 1984 and led the team in hitting with a .343 average.
PETE RAMSEY '72 -FOOTBALL - A three year starter who was the best offensive lineman in a bleak era (VMI won two games in those three seasons)... his junior season he played both offensive and defensive tackle and was a honorable mention All Southern Conference and All America selection as an offensive lineman... as a senior, he was team co-captain and was named first team All Conference and All State Big Five and was again honorable mention All America... offensive line coach Alf Satterfield, who had an extensive collegiate coaching career said of Ramsey, "He is the best lineman I have ever coached or coached against."... he won the Henry Fairfax Ayers '06 Medal that year as the teams Most Valuable Player as well as the Intercollegiate Sports Award for overall athletic excellence... he was a lieutenant in the Corps of Cadets and a Deans List student.
LOUIS “WEENIE” MILLER – SPECIAL CITATION- POSTHUMOUSLY
Coached VMI’s first Southern Conference tournament championship basketball team in 1964 and led the Keydets to their first ever NCAA tournament appearance that season...was head basketball coach at VMI for six seasons from 1959 to 1964 and also served as a football assistant under John McKenna...in the 1964 SC tournament run, the Keydets pulled off one of the greatest upsets in school history in the semi-finals, defeating Lefty Dreisell’s top 10 nationally ranked Davidson squad, 82-81, before a sellout crowd in the Charlotte Coliseum...after leaving coaching, Miller entered private business, but became a beloved radio color commentator for VMI football in the 70’s and early 80’s, teaming with play-by-play man Joe Knakel to form one of the most entertaining broadcast tandems in the state and Southern Conference...later served as athletic director at Hampden-Sydney where he also served previously as head basketball coach...also was head basketball coach at Washington & Lee... inducted into the Virginia Sports Hall of Fame...Played basketball, football and baseball at the University of Richmond from 1944 to 1947. He later went on to coach all three sports for the Spiders. Miller was an All-State performer at Richmond in both basketball and baseball and captained both teams as a senior...died in 2003.