This year's 14-member Kansas Sports Hall of Fame class includes five of the biggest names in Kansas University history.
"It's quite a list," said Bill Hougland, two-time Olympic basketball gold medalist and member of KU's 1952 national title team.
"It is amazing," indicated Marian Washington, who won 560 games in 31 seasons as KU women's basketball coach.
Hougland and Washington, both of whom live in Lawrence, will be enshrined with former KU football coach Jack Mitchell, quarterback Bobby Douglass and basketball player and coach Howard Engleman, as well as Baker University football coach Charlie Richard, at today's induction ceremonies in Wichita.
Others to be inducted are Darren Daulton, Natasha Matson Fife, Catherine Fox, Xavier McDaniel, Bill Morse, Bill Snyder, Luther Taylor and Otto Unruh. Richard, Taylor and Unruh are deceased.
"It is great to be mentioned in the same group of people like these who have been pioneers - ones who stayed the course and realized unbelievable accomplishments," said Washington, a 2004 inductee in the Women's Basketball Hall of Fame.
"The people in this class - the things they've done are very impressive," noted Hougland, who earned Olympic gold in '52 and '56, after his stellar career in basketball at KU as well standout prep career in several sports at Beloit High.
"As an individual, yes," Hougland said, asked if today's induction would be the highlight of his athletic career.
"The thing that stands out in my mind was representing the United States in the Olympics. I will never forget that. I remember our '52 team standing at attention when they played the Star-Spangled Banner. I felt more emotion than I've ever felt in sports," Hougland added.
Washington, who led the Jayhawks to 11 NCAA Tournament appearances and seven Big Eight/Big 12 crowns, was named Conference Coach of the Year three times and served as an assistant coach of the 1996 U.S. Olympic gold-medal team. She was named to the Women's Basketball Hall in 2004.
"To be able to go into the Kansas Hall of Fame, where I had my career in coaching, is definitely a thrill," Washington said.
"I don't know how I'd rank it. I feel this is where it all began for me. It's not like I moved from school to school. I loved Kansas and believed in the possibilities of that program. We had so many wonderful athletes in 30 years. I don't think you can compare when people express they appreciate what you've done."
Washington and Hougland said they were looking forward to visiting with the inductees and their families today. Both will have family members in attendance.
"I will be thrilled to get a chance to know them better," Washington said. "You know of them all. You've heard of them all and watched some of them."
Here's a look at all the inductees starting with those affiliated with KU and Baker:
Bill Hougland: Won gold at the 1952 Games in Helsinki, Finland, and the 1956 Olympics in Melbourne, Australia. He was team captain at the '56 Games ... Was born in Caldwell, but moved from El Dorado to Beloit with his parents before the start of the 1946-47 school year. ... The 6-foot-4 Hougland became one of the state's best players, leading Beloit High to the Class A state championship game for the first time in school history. He also played in the state tournament in 1948 and earned all-state honors. ... Hougland at KU was a senior starter during the 1951-1952 season when the Jayhawks won the national championship ... Hougland left the Phillips Petroleum Company in 1961 and went to work for Koch Industries for 30 years before retiring in 1991.
Howard Engleman: Played for the legendary Phog Allen at KU and was the second KU player in school history to earn consensus All-American first-team honors. ... led the Jayhawks to two Big Six Conference championships and the national championship game against Indiana in 1940. ... Led KU in scoring in 1939 and '41. ... His scoring average of 16.1 ppg in 1941 was the highest scoring average ever by a Jayhawk player up to that point. ... Nicknamed "The Rope" by KU fans, was named to the 1940 NCAA all-tourney team and made the game-winning field goal in the final seconds against Southern Cal in the semifinals. ... Following World War II, was assistant coach under Allen during the 1946-47 season and later took over as head coach for the final 14 games of the season after Allen was ordered to rest. ... Jersey No. 5 was hung in the rafters in Allen Fieldhouse on March 1, 2003. ... Starred for Arkansas City High in the 1930s and led the Bulldogs to a second-place finish to Buhler in the Class A State Tournament in 1936. ... Spent much of his life working as an attorney in Salina.
Bobby Douglass: The powerfully-built 6-foot-3, 215-pounder was a first-team all-state quarterback at El Dorado High in 1964 ... Led KU to a 9-2 record and a share of the Big Eight Conference championship in 1968, as well as a second-place finish in '67 ... Was consensus first-team All-American as a senior as the Jayhawks played in the Orange Bowl for the first time in over two decades. ... Engineered back-to-back wins over Nebraska in 1967 and 1968 and finished his college career with 2,817 yards passing and over 1,000 yards rushing. ... Selected in first round of the 1968 NFL Draft by the Chicago Bears and spent 13 seasons in the National Football League with Chicago, San Diego, New Orleans and Green Bay. ... Douglass's name and number are emblazoned in the north bowl of KU's Memorial Stadium in honor of his All-American honors.
Marian Washington: Led the KU women's basketball team to the NCAA Tournament 11 times and the AIAW Tournament (pre-NCAA) another four times. ... Led KU to 17 seasons of 20 or more victories and seven conference and six conference tournament championships, finishing her career at KU with a record of 560 wins and 363 losses for a .607 winning percentage. ... Pioneered the women's athletic program at KU ... Was the first of two black women to play on a United States national team (1969-71), the first black woman to serve as head coach for a U.S. international team (1982 U.S. Select) and first black woman to coach on an Olympic staff (assistant on 1996 gold-medal winning team). ... Excelled in seven sports while in high school and was a two-time AAU All-American at West Chester State, leading the Golden Rams to a national title in 1969, the first-ever in the history of collegiate women's basketball and was also an outstanding track and field athlete and handball player. ... Inducted into the Women's Basketball Hall of Fame in 2004 and is also a member of the West Chester State University and Kansas University Halls of Fame.
Jack Mitchell: Helped start one of the great college football dynasties of all-time during his days as a quarterback for the Oklahoma Sooners before becoming successful coach at Kansas. ... Earned all-state honors in football as a senior at Arkansas City High and also won a state championship in tennis as part of a doubles team. ... Led Ark Valley League in scoring as a junior and senior in basketball and was offered a scholarship by KU head coach Allen. ... Accepted football scholarship to Texas for the 1942 season, but was there for only one year before entering military service in World War II. ... Enrolled at Oklahoma in 1946, returning seven punts for touchdowns in his career, a record that stood until 2003. ... Led coach Bud Wilkinson's team to a 17-3 record as a junior and senior. He was an All-American quarterback in 1948 and was named the Most Valuable Player of the 1949 Sugar Bowl. ... Produced a 13-5-1 record at Wichita State (1953-54), including a 9-1 mark in 1954, and a 44-42-2 mark at KU (1958-66) ... Led KU to a victory in the 1961 Bluebonnet Bowl and coached legends Gale Sayers and John Hadl.
Charlie Richard: Built Baker University into one of the best small-college football programs in the country during his 14 seasons ... Guided the Wildcats to a record of 123 wins, 28 losses and one tie from 1980-90, 1992-94. ... Led Baker to 11 Heart of America Athletic Conference championships, 10 NAIA playoff appearances and a victory in the 1985 Sunflower Bowl. Richard's team won nine games nine times and, at the end of the 1994 season, had been ranked in the NAIA Top 25 for 128 consecutive weeks. ... Produced 32 All-Americans, 25 Academic All-Americans and was named the conference coach of the year six times. ... At William Jewell College was the team's quarterback, leading the Cardinals to a 9-1 record as a senior. ... In 1980, took over at Baker where he stayed until a heart attack took his life in 1994 during a meeting with his coaching staff. ... Inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 2004.
Darren Daulton: One of the top catchers in Major League Baseball for the Philadelphia Phillies, four-time National League All-Star in 14 seasons. ... Starred in football and baseball at Arkansas City. ... Hit 137 major-league home runs, had 511 hits, 588 RBIs in 1,161 games.
Natasha Matson Fife: Winfield High standout was five-time Kansas Women's Golf Association Amateur champ, seven-time KWGA Senior Amateur champ, ranked in top 10 nationally in both USGA Senior Amateurs and Women's Amateurs.
Catherine Fox: Two-time Olympic gold medalist in swimming at 1996 Olympics. ... Nine-time NCAA champion, 21-time All-American at Stanford University. ... U.S. champion and record holder in 100-meter backstroke. Graduated from Roeland Park Miege High.
Xavier McDaniel: Wichita State University All-American basketball player. ... Led nation in scoring and rebounding in 1985 to become first player in NCAA history to accomplish that feat. ... Missouri Valley Conference Player of the Year two times. ... Twelve-season NBA career.
Bill Morse: NAIA Hall of Fame basketball coach, led Fort Hays State University to back-to-back NAIA national basketball championships in 1984 and 1985. ... Won 236 games in 10 seasons at FHSU, and 500 wins in his career with a 72.9 winning percentage.
Bill Snyder: Three-time national football coach of the year, five-time Big Eight/12 coach of the year, led Kansas State to 11 consecutive bowl games in 17 seasons and 11 times finished in the AP top 20 in national rankings. ... Won more games as K-State coach than all 12 of his predecessors combined. ... Coached 33 AP All-Americans, 42 NFL draft picks.
Luther "Dummy" Taylor: Born deaf, Oskaloosa's Taylor spent nine seasons in the pioneer years of Major League Baseball. ... One of the National League's top pitchers for the New York Giants, won 115 games with a career ERA of 2.75. ... Pitched 21 career shutouts. ... Later supervised all sports at Kansas School for the Deaf in Olathe, where the gymnasium bears his name. He is deceased.
Otto Unruh: Football/track coach at Bethel College and Clay Center High, a combined 44 years. ... Clay Center won three mythical state football titles, 126-65-8 record with seven straight regional and two state track titles. ... Clay Center stadium bears his name. ... He is deceased.