In September, 14 more alumni took their well-earned places in the IUP Athletics Hall of Fame. The group excelled in eight different sports spanning parts of the past seven decades. Here is the Class of 2012:
A two-sport star, Jack Bizyak ’58 earned four letters in both baseball and basketball. During his senior season, he guided Indiana State Teachers College to a 25-3 record on the hardwood. In baseball, he was the team’s cleanup hitter, and he batted .405 as a sophomore.
A standout hurdler on the track and field team and a wide receiver on the football team, Derek Brinkley ’02 wrapped up his athletic career with an NCAA Division II national title in the 400-meter hurdles. He finished in the top five at the NCAA Championships every year during his career. In football, he caught more than 50 passes for teams that went a combined 32-8.
Bill Dawson ’56, a four-year letterman in football, was named to the Pennsylvania college All-Star team after his senior season. He also lettered three times in baseball for ISTC.
An Indiana State College Athlete of the Year, Barry Gasdek ’64 played three sports, excelling in football, wrestling, and track and field. During his senior season, the football team won seven games, and he was named to the all-conference team.
When her softball career ended at IUP, Julie Giacomin ’01 was first or second in every major pitching statistic in school history. She won 62 games, had a 1.54 ERA, and guided IUP to two appearances in the NCAA playoffs.
His career concluded more than 20 years ago (1988-91), but Andrew “Jai” Hill ’03 continues to hold school records in football for receptions, receiving yards, and receiving touchdowns. He was a fourtime all-conference pick, and he helped lead IUP to a 43-8 record in his time on campus.
In the days of multi-sport stars, Nick Kish was one of the best. From 1940-42, he played several positions on the football team, was a standout on the baseball diamond, and was a top fighter on the boxing team. After leaving Indiana State Teachers College, Kish joined the U.S. efforts in World War II for the Army Air Corps. He was killed in action on June 26, 1943.
Richard Lynch ’77, M’80, a four-year letter winner in basketball, helped lead IUP to a 65-35 record in his career, including a 21-8 mark in 1973-74, a season in which IUP won the PSAC championship and two games at the NAIA tournament. He led the team in scoring and rebounds during his senior season.
A multi-sport star, John Marefka ’56 lettered four times in both football and baseball. He was a two-time all-conference pick in football and was named to the Associated Press Little All-America team. In baseball, he batted .401 during his senior season.
A two-time IUP Athlete of the Year (1966 and ’67), Paul Neatrour ’67, M’75 was a captain of the football team and helped IUP go 29-8-1 during his four-year tenure. In his sophomore and junior seasons, IUP played in the PSAC championship game.
Amber Plowden ’02, a three-time PSAC Track Athlete of the Year, earned an NCAA Division II championship in the 100 meters in 2001. She owns four conference and school records and was an eight-time All- American.
During his final collegiate meet, James Russell ’92 earned All-America honors in the one-meter and three-meter diving competitions at the NCAA Division II championships. He earned four letters as a member of the IUP diving team.
Beginning his college career as a walk-on, Mike Spingola ’66 quickly cracked the basketball team’s starting lineup and was a mainstay there for three seasons. As a senior, he averaged double figures in scoring and was the team captain.
A six-time PSAC champion, Ronald Steele ’77 is one of the most decorated track and field athletes in school history. He won the 200 meters at the conference meet in 1974 and ’75 and was a member of the 1,600-meter relay team that won four straight conference titles.
In addition, Walt Lewis ’70 and Sue Lamm Lewis ’71 were recognized with the honorary Bell Ringer Award for their longtime support of IUP athletics.
IUP Athletic Hall of Fame inductees were recognized during halftime of the September 15 football game. Front row, from left: Jack Bizyak, Bill Dawson, Derek Brinkley, Barry Gasdek, Bernie Kish for the late Nick Kish, and John Marefka. Second row: Michael Driscoll, IUP president; Stephanie Spingola, representing her late husband, Mike Spingola; inductees Julie Giacomin, Ronald Steele, Amber Plowden, Richard Lynch, Jai Hill, James Russell, and Paul Neatrour; Bell Ringer awardees Walt Lewis and Sue Lamm Lewis; and Frank Condino, IUP athletic director. Photo: Keith Boyer
As the landscape began to change in the spring with the announcement of a four-team playoff for the Football Bowl Subdivision schools, a member of the process was Dan Radakovich ’80, the director of athletics at Georgia Tech, who took part in the meetings. At another Atlantic Coast Conference school, John Ballein ’83 is in his 13th season as Virginia Tech’s associate director of athletics for football operations and handles all administrative and operational duties dealing with the football program. John McCutcheon ’75 is in his ninth year as the director of athletics at the University of Massachusetts. He held the same position at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo from 1992 to 2004. At the 2012 NCAA convention, Terry Rupert ’76, M’82, the athletics director at Wilmington (Ohio) College, had his term extended on the Division III Presidents and Management councils for another four years.
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Former IUP star Bob Miscik ’80, M’89, who played 11 seasons of professional baseball, is in his second year as the Milwaukee Brewers’ minor league fielding coordinator. In that role, he works with players of all levels in the Brewers’ farm system.
After spending more than 10 years coaching in Europe, Mike Taylor ’95 has planted his roots again in the States. He was named the head coach of the Maine Red Claws, a team in the NBA Developmental League associated with the Boston Celtics. Last year, he was an assistant with the Rio Grande Valley Vipers, another D-League team.
Over the years, Rick Heckler ’78 coached many sports at the high school level, but this year he began coaching in the college ranks—in two sports. He was recently hired as the men’s cross country and women’s bowling coach at Chowan College, in Murfreesboro, North Carolina.
With the fall season under way, several former IUP players are working as college football coaches. Two are assistants at rival PSAC schools: Dave Durish ’91 is at Clarion while John Stuart ’97 coaches at Cheyney. Dave Livengood ’07 is an assistant at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh. Brad Potts ’05, M’07 is the strength and conditioning coach at Lafayette College in Easton. Tony Marciano ’78 is the assistant head coach at University of the Incarnate Word in San Antonio, Texas. He’s also the offensive coordinator and offensive line coach for the Cardinals. Chad Jamison ’97, M’99 is the director of high school relations, where he helps with recruiting, at North Carolina State.
Martin Streight ’95 was a standout thrower on the IUP track and field team, and he has parlayed that into a successful NFL career as a strength and conditioning coach. He’s now in his seventh season with the Minnesota Vikings, and he has previously worked with the Arizona Cardinals and Philadelphia Eagles. Ben McAdoo ’00 was promoted during the offseason from tight ends coach to quarterbacks coach for the NFL’s Green Bay Packers. Chad Henry ’96, M’98, son of Boardwalk Bowl team member Jack Henry ’69, began his 15th season as a scout for the Detroit Lions.
Terry Totten ’81, M’83 is in his eighth season as the head coach at Central Catholic High School in Pittsburgh. He guided the Vikings to the PIAA Class AAAA state title in 2007. Sixteen of his seniors from 2011 are now playing college football. Jason Rose ’07 is the junior varsity head coach and a varsity assistant at Rockville High School in Maryland.
For their support of scholarships for current IUP football players, members of the 1968 Boardwalk Bowl team were honored during a game in September. From left: coach Chuck Klausing, Bob Basehore Jr. ’71, Jack Henry ’69, Dale Hall ’69, Rob Barto ’71, Chad Ruffner ’71, Jerry Clark ’69, IUP President Michael Driscoll, Carmine Cortazzo ’70, Bob Strouse ’70, Harry Kaufman ’71, and Bob Lasser ’71, M’83.
Following two seasons as an assistant coach at Tusculum College in Tennessee, Julie Huebner ’06 was promoted to head coach in June. The Pioneers will begin their first season under Huebner early next year, with hopes of building upon their 2012 season, in which they tied a school record for wins, with 32.
After serving as the director of the National Training Center and head coach for USA Diving for three years, John Wingfield ’85, M’88 was hired in August as assistant diving coach at Indiana University. And following a successful tenure as a high school football coach, David Mason ’83 has begun work as the diving coach at Keene State in New Hampshire.
Since 1989, the director of tennis at Bermuda Run Country Club in North Carolina has been Bill Appelt ’83, who played for a number of years at both the college and professional levels.
The Saint Francis University women’s volleyball team, under the guidance of fifth-year coach Chuck Mullen ’02, M’04, began its season with a bang by beating the host team at the West Virginia University Invitational. Last year, Mullen guided the Red Flash to a berth in the Northeast Conference championship match.
More from the Fall-Winter 2012 Issue of IUP Magazine
IUP leads a coalition addressing the national shortage of African American male schoolteachers.
Susan Snyder ’85 on winning the 2012 Pulitzer Prize.
Several principles will guide us as we formulate together our vision of the future IUP.
Students are boosting their IUP philanthropy. What gives?
In 1979, the soccer team was sinking. Then came Trevor.
50 years of computing at IUP.
Alumni Association Board Officers, and how they got that way.
Bob Henger ’63 devotes a chapter of his book to his years at Indiana State College.
Some of the more unusual memorabilia that alumni have lovingly donated to IUP.