Class of Six Chosen For MU Athletics Hall of Fame

MUTIGERS.COM This year's class is the 22nd in Mizzou's history.
This year's class is the 22nd in Mizzou's history.

Jan. 9, 2012

COLUMBIA, Mo. - Six outstanding former student-athletes have been selected for induction into the University of Missouri Intercollegiate Athletics Hall of Fame. They will represent the 22nd induction class since the inception of the Hall in 1990.

Here is a look at this year's inductees, with more extensive biographical information to follow:


Name Sport(s) Years Hometown Notes
Ben Askren Wrestling 2004-07 Hartland, Wis. Possibly the most dominant MU athlete in any sport ever, who won two NCAA titles, three Big 12 titles and finished with a record of 153-8;
Don Chadwick Football 1956-58 Independence, Mo. One of the top two-way linemen of his era who was an honorable-mention All-American guard as a senior in 1958;
Tom Heckman Baseball 1978-81 Jefferson City, Mo. A dominant starter who won 10 games three-straight years, and who led MU to a Big Eight title as a junior and who was an honorable-mention All-American as a senior;
Max Scherzer Baseball 2004-06 Chesterfield, Mo. One of the most dominant pitchers in MU history who was the Big 12 Pitcher of the Year in 2005 and twice led the league in ERA before becoming MU's first-ever 1st-round MLB draft pick;
Russ Sloan Football 1958-59 Columbia, Mo. Top-notch two-way player for legendary Coach Dan Devine who was an honorable-mention All-American selection as a senior end before going on to a career in college athletics;
George Williams Men's Basketball, Track & Field, Tennis 1920-21
Was one of the most dominant players in the nation of his time, led MU to a 34-2 combined record over two years, two MVC titles and national rankings of #1 and #2;

The induction dinner will be held Fri., Feb. 10th, 2012, at the Courtyard by Marriott in Columbia. A reception will begin at 6:00 p.m., followed by dinner at 7:00 p.m. Tickets may be purchased by contacting Carly Northup in the Tiger Development Office, at The class will be further honored during halftime ceremonies at the next day's men's basketball game, Feb. 11th against Baylor.

The Hall's constitution and bylaws express its purpose - " recognize and honor those individuals who have made exceptional contributions to the achievements and prestige of the University of Missouri in the field of athletics, and who have continued to demonstrate in their lives, the values imparted by intercollegiate athletics."

The current class will up the membership to 181 individuals and four teams in the Hall of Fame. Inductees are honored in a display located in the main entrance at Mizzou Arena.

Nominations are accepted year-round by sending support material to: Chad Moller, Director of Athletic Media Relations, Mizzou Athletics, P.O. Box 677, Hearnes Center, Columbia, Mo. 65205.

Following are biographical sketches of each inductee...

Ben Askren

Wrestling, 2004-07

Arguably the most dominant athlete to ever compete in an inpidual sport in Mizzou history, as he owned his weight class on a national basis for his last two seasons ... Went a combined 87-0 in his junior and senior seasons (42-0 and 45-0, respectively) and won NCAA Championships at 174 pounds in 2006 and 2007 ... Was also NCAA runner up in his first two years (2004-05) and finished his career with a sterling 153-8 record, and as the winningest and most decorated wrestler in MU history ... Was a three-time Big 12 champion, and became Mizzou's first-ever four-time All-American ... Won the Dan Hodge Trophy - given to the nation's top wrestler - in both 2006 and 2007, becoming just the second wrestler in NCAA history to win the award twice ... Ended his MU career holding numerous records, including 91 falls (44 more than the old record), and 15 technical falls, among many others ... Also a top-notch student who was a four-time NWCA Academic All-American, as well as a four-time first-team Academic All-Big 12 selection ... Became the first Tiger wrestler to qualify for the Olympics (Beijing, 2008), and he served for two years as a volunteer assistant on the Mizzou staff before beginning a career in Mixed Martial Arts fighting, where he quickly ascended to the Bellator Welterweight Championship with a 9-0 record.


Football, 1956-58

One of the top two-way linemen of his era for Tiger football who won honorable-mention All-American honors at guard as a senior in 1958 by both the Associated Press and United Press International ... Had the distinction of playing for three different College Football Hall of Fame head coaches at Mizzou in his final three years - Don Faurot in 1956, Frank Broyles in 1957 and Dan Devine in 1958 ... Starred on the offensive line as a guard, but also played a key role on Tiger defenses, playing both tackle and linebacker ... Was voted team captain as a senior, and won first-team All-Big Eight honors for his play as the Tigers went 5-4-1 in Devine's first season at MU ... Was picked by Faurot to be included on his lifetime two-way All-Mizzou team ... Selected to play in the East-West Shrine Game at guard in 1959 ... Was an honorable-mention all-league performer in 1956 (Big Seven) and 1957 (Big Eight) ... Was an outstanding student and citizen who was chosen for induction into the Mystical Seven, an extremely exclusive membership society on campus.


Baseball, 1978-81

A dominant starter for some very good Mizzou baseball teams ... Was an honorable-mention All-American pitcher (1981) for the Tigers who set numerous records during his time on the mound ... Won 10 games in three consecutive seasons (1979-80-81) and helped lead Mizzou to a Big Eight Conference championship in 1980 ... Completed his playing days holding Mizzou and Big Eight Conference records for career victories (36), and his 11 complete games in 1981 is also an MU single-season record ... Led Mizzou in ERA in 1978 (1.94) and 1979 (2.33) ... Was an All-Big Eight selection his last two seasons (1980-81), and his 323.2 career innings pitched stood as the school record when he completed play ... Was also an outstanding student who was twice selected as an Academic All-American.

Max Scherzer

Baseball, 2004-06

A St. Louis native who became one of the nation's most dominant pitchers in a stellar three-year career, helping elevate the Tiger program to elite status before moving onto the professional ranks where he is now among the best young pitchers in the American League ... Broke out as a sophomore in 2005 when he led the Big 12 Conference in ERA (1.86) and strikeouts (131) while breaking a 14-year old school record with his strikeouts ... Won nine games that season, and was part of a combined no-hitter against Texas Tech on April 1, 2005 ... Was named the Big 12 Pitcher of the Year in 2005, and also claimed 2nd-Team All-American honors while being named 1st-Team All-Big 12 as well ... Was a semifinalist in 2005 for the Clemens Award, which honors the top pitcher in the nation ... The 2005 Tiger team won 40 games for the first time since 1991, and finished 4th in the Big 12 Conference, the team's highest league finish since 1996 ... As a junior in 2006, was slowed by injuries, but still managed a 7-2 record and a Big 12-leading 1.95 ERA while earning 1st-Team All-Region honors by the ABCA ... Got the win over No. 1-ranked Florida that season and later tossed a seven-inning shutout against Oklahoma in the Big 12 Tournament ... In 2006, Mizzou went to Pepperdine and won its first-ever NCAA Regional, before being eliminated by Cal State-Fullerton in the Super Regional round ... Was a member of the USA Baseball National Team (2005), and later became the 11th-overall selection in the 2006 MLB Draft by the Arizona Diamondbacks - the highest any Tiger had ever been drafted at the time, and the first-ever Tiger to go in the first round ... Was named the Diamondbacks' Rookie of the Year in 2008 after posting a 3.05 ERA in 16 appearances and he made a big splash in his major league debut when he struck out seven Houston Astros in just 4.1 innings of work ... Was traded to Detroit prior to 2010 and won a career-high 15 games for the Tigers in 2011, helping the team to the ALCS by defeating the New York Yankees in his first career post-season start in the ALDS.


Football, 1958-59

A Columbia native who was a standout player on both sides of the ball, lettering in 1958 and 1959 for new Head Coach Dan Devine ... Was a consensus 1st-Team All-Big Eight pick at end as a senior in 1959, as he helped the Tigers to the 1960 Orange Bowl and a final ranking of 18th nationally ... Was the only player on the coaches' all-conference team to be a unanimous pick that season ... Also claimed honorable mention All-American honors by several outlets for his senior season and was selected by legendary Oklahoma Coach Bud Wilkinson to play in the Hula Bowl ... Led the Tigers in receptions and receiving TDs in both 1958 and 1959, catching 16 passes for 211 yards and 3 TDs the first year, and following with 13 catches for 128 yards and 3 TDs in 1959 ... Closed his Tiger career in the 1960 Orange Bowl against Georgia by catching 6 passes for 73 yards, which was an MU record at the time ... Had professional opportunities with the Washington Redskins, San Diego Charges and New York Jets in the NFL, but injuries prevented him from pursuing his football career ... Earned both his undergraduate and graduate degrees from Mizzou and later entered the coaching profession, where he eventually won three conference championships and had a career winning percentage of 80.4% at Northeast Missouri State (now Truman State) ... His winning percentage there was second in school history only to Don Faurot ... Later went on to serve as Director of Athletics at Southeast Missouri State and Fresno State before entering the private sector ... Was an accomplished baseball player who was offered a professional contract with the St. Louis Cardinals out of high school, before he chose to attend and play football at Mizzou.


Men's Basketball, 1920-21

In the early era of basketball, was one of the most dominant players in the entire nation for a two-year span ... Led Mizzou to a combined 34-2 record and a pair of Missouri Valley Conference team championships in his two seasons on the hardwood ... As a sophomore in the 1920 season, was named an All-American by the Helms Foundation as the Tigers went 17-1 and finished ranked #2 in the end of season Premo Polls ... The Tigers would have the exact same record a year later and finish ranked #1 in the final Premo Polls ... Averaged a then-MU record 18.3 points in 1921, and was named the national player of the year by the Helms Foundation, in addition to being a first-team All-American for the second straight season ... In his first-ever varsity game, scored 20 points to match the entire output of the Iowa State team in a 55-20 Mizzou victory ... Later that season, in the first game legendary Kansas Coach Phog Allen ever coached against Mizzou, Williams led the way to a 32-27 overtime victory over KU ... In his junior season of 1921, the Tigers again went 17-1 and claimed the MVC title as Williams scored 48.4% (311-of-643) of MU's total points on the season, and he nearly matched the entire season output of points scored by Tiger opponents (they scored 335 in 18 games) ... His 311 points would stand as the MU single-season points record until 1951 and nobody at MU surpassed his scoring average of 18.3 points until Bob Reiter in 1954 (19.6) ... ... Also was a well-rounded athlete who lettered in both track (high jump and hurdles, winning a Valley Conference title in high jump one year) as well as tennis at Mizzou, while also finding time to serve on the MU student-council ... Left Mizzou after his junior season to play professionally in the AAU circuit, which was the equivalent to the NBA back then, and he played on two AAU national championship teams while winning countless inpidual honors.

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