Razorback notes: Hall of Honor and windy pole vaults

FAYETTEVILLE - A two-time U.S. Olympian and five-time NCAA champion long and triple jumper, two football greats from the 1970s and two football great from the 1990s, a baseball All-American, a state of Arkansas Hall of Fame golfer, the all-time assists leader in Arkansas women’s basketball and the women’s tennis program’s only three-time All-American tennis player will be inducted into the University of Arkansas Sports Hall of Honor, the Razorbacks announced Thursday.

 

The honoree from men’s track and field is Melvin Lister, the eight-time All-American for retired coach John McDonnell’s Razorbacks and a U.S. Olympic long jumper in 2000 and U.S. Olympic triple jumper in 2004.

From football, coached in the 1970s by Frank Broyles, are defensive backs Louis Campbell of Hamburg, who lettered from 1970-72 and a 1972 team captain and 1971 Southwest Conference interceptions later to serve as defensive backfield coach from 1992-1997 for Jack Crow. Also slated for induction are ,Joe Kines and Danny Ford, including Ford’s 1995 SEC West championsl.

Bo Busby of Monticello, a safety lettering from 1973-76 and first-team All-Southwest Conference on Broyles’ 1975 SWC and Cotton Bowl championship team.

From football in another are is running back Madre Hill of Malvern, first-team All-SEC for Ford’s 1995 SEC West champions and All-America safety Ken Hamlin, making a Razorbacks leading 381 tackles despite turning pro before his senior year and a 2003-2010 NFL career.

Troy Edlund lettered as an outfielder from 1986-89 for Norm DeBriyn’s Razorbacks with Arkansas annually advancing to NCAA regionals and twice to the College World Series in 1987 and ’89.

Jack O’Keefe golfed professionally after lettering four years, three as an All-American, for the Razorbacks men’s golf teams from 1989-93. He also served as assistant golf coach at the University of Arkansas.

A point guard for former Lady Razorbacks basketball coach Gary Blair, Amy Wright played a school record 131 consecutive games from 1999–2003 for two NCAA Tournament and two WNIT teams, one a WNIT champions while setting school records of 717 and 205 for career and single season assists.

Lettering in Lady Razorbacks tennis from 1998-2001, Chin Bee Khoo is the program’s only three-time All-American and also three times adorned the SEC Academic honor roll.

They will be inducted at the Hall of Honor banquet Sept. 8 at the Fayetteville Town Center the night before the football Razorbacks host TCU at Reynolds Razorback Stadium.

Vaulting through the wind

At last winter’s NCAA Women’s Indoor Championships, Arkansas tallied an unprecedented three All-American pole vaulters yet left College Station, Texas, disappointed.

Lexi Weeks, the U.S. Olympian from Cabot and 2016 SEC and NCAA Indoor and Outdoor pole vault champion, finished tied for seventh vaulting 13-9 1-2 despite a collegiate career routinely clearing 14-feet and even clearing 15-5 outdoors as the 2016 U.S. Olympic Trials bronze medalist.

Twin sister Tori, the SEC Indoor runner-up and Indoor All-American last year and vaulting spectacularly in 2017 as the SEC indoor champ was fifth at the NCAA while teammate Desiree Freier vaulted 14-1 3-4.

Both solid jumps but not up to Alabama’s Lakan Taylor and Kentucky’s Olivia Gruver pulled off a stunning first and third vaulting 14-7 1-4 and 14-5 1-4.

Two the Weeks sisters had beaten in the SEC ndoor beat them in the NCAA Indoor.

Winds of change brewed in Columbia, South Carolina.

For according to Arkansas coach Lance Harter whose forte is coaching distance runners, women’s vault coach Bryan Compton through swirling changing winds and threat of rain shrewdly guided the Weeks sisters, Tori and Lexi both vaulted 14-7 1-4, with Lexi winning on fewer misses, and Freier jumped 14-4 1-4 for a 1-2-3 24 team points finish as Aransas won the meet 128-100 over runner-up LSU.

Taylor settled for fourth.

A 1-2-3 finish at the NCAA Indoor champion’s expense was no easy feat.

“The last time we went 1-2-3 in the pole vault was like 2013,” Harter said. “It’s been awhile. That was another masterful job by Bryan. The winds were swirling and an impending thunderstorm coming in. Any time the winds change and blows in your face it freaks vaulters out as it should because wind definitely can stymie you. He had the kids do some changing and they just looked great while the opposition including the defending national indoor champion struggled and the All-American from Kentucky struggled. So it was very much a masterful coaching job.”

 

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