Eleven New Members Inducted Into WVU Sports Hall Of Fame
MORGANTOWN, W.Va.–Saturday was a time of memories and congratulations, as the WVU Sports Hall of Fame inducted 11 new members.
The 2018 class includes Kate Bulger (women’s basketball), Jon Capon (men’s soccer), Avon Cobourne (football), Mike Gansey (men’s basketball), Tom Keane (football), Larry Krutko (football), Eleanor Lamb (administration), Steve Slaton (football), Bev Fry Plocki (gymnastics), Pat White (football) and Web Wright (rifle).
Induction ceremonies took place prior to the WVU/Kansas State football game. This class brings the total number of inductees to 188.
Kate Bulger – A four-year letterwinner from 2001-04 and senior captain, Kate Bulger became the first Mountaineer drafted by the WNBA as the No. 38 pick of the Minnesota Lynx in the 2004 draft.
Bulger, a Pittsburgh native, was a four-time honoree in the Big East, named to the All-Big East Second Team her senior season, the third team her junior season, the second team as a sophomore and the Big East All-Rookie Team as a freshman.
Starting every game of her career and never missing a game, Bulger led the Mountaineers in scoring in each of her four seasons, finishing with 1,732 points, which rank as the sixth-highest career point total in WVU women’s basketball history. She averaged 15.1 points per game, ranking seventh in WVU’s career record books, while recording 648-of-1,577 attempts from the field.
Known as one of WVU’s top all-time shooters, Bulger continues to hold WVU’s record for 3-point field goals made (302) and 3-point field goal attempts (724) and ranks second for 3-point field goal percentage (.417). In addition to her offense, Bulger also ranks No. 10 in WVU’s record books with 94 career blocked shots. With 115 career games played and started, Bulger ranks No. 3 in WVU’s career record books with 4,008 minutes played.
As a senior in 2004, Bulger ranked 12th nationally for three-point field goals made per game (2.9) and 24th in the nation for 3-point field goal percentage, making 39.3 percent (92-234). She led WVU in scoring 14 times, including nine 20-point outings. Bulger led WVU to its first NCAA Tournament appearance since 1992.
In 2003, Bulger earned Preseason All-Big East Second Team honors and went on to lead the league and finish third nationally in 3-point field goal percentage (47%). Her 3-point field goal percentage remains a WVU record for a single season to this day.
Her shooting helped the Mountaineers to the fourth-best team three-point field goal percentage (39.4%) in the country. She scored a career-high 36 points, including the game winner, in WVU’s 77-74 overtime win over Syracuse. At the time, that performance set a WVU Coliseum record for points (36) and was second in field goals made (14) in a single game, and earned her Big East Player of the Week honors. Bulger closed the season named all-underrated All-America Honorable Mention by womenscollegehoops.com.
As a sophomore, Bulger became only the second player in program history to earn all-conference second team honors. She finished second in the conference for scoring average (15.4) and was a two-time Big East Player of the Week. Recording 22 double-digit scoring outings, Bulger led WVU in scoring on 14 occasions, including her first 30-point outing with 33 points in WVU’s win over Robert Morris.
Bulger was a solid contributor for the Mountaineers from the start. In her rookie season, she led WVU, ranked 14th nationally and second in the Big East, with her 41.6 3-point field goal percentage. Her 14.4 points per game led the team and ranked seventh in the Big East. She also led WVU in field goal percentage (.423) and total points (391) that season. Starting all 27 games as a true freshman, Bulger was second on the team in minutes played (938), assists (63) and blocked shots (17).
Bulger joins her brother, Marc (2010 inductee), as the first siblings to be inducted into the WVU Sports Hall of Fame.
Bulger graduated from West Virginia with a bachelor’s degree in communications. She received a master’s degree in education from Duquesne and a second master’s degree in educational leadership from Northern Arizona. Bulger currently lives in Chandler, Arizona, where she is in her fourth year as principal of a kindergarten through eighth grade school.
Jon Capon – A dominating goalkeeping force between the posts, Jon Capon was a four-year letterwinner and three-time team captain for men’s soccer from 1978-81.
Capon, a native of Rockville, Maryland, was a four-year starter for the Mountaineers, leaving WVU holding nearly every goalkeeping record at the school. He compiled a school-record 343 saves in 5,484 minutes played. Capon had a 1.17 goals allowed average (GAA) and 28 shutouts during his career, which were WVU career records for more than 25 years.
As a senior, Capon allowed just 17 goals in 16 games with six shutouts during an 11-5 season and NCAA Quarterfinal appearance for the Mountaineers. Earning NSCAA First Team All-America honors in 1981, Capon posted a 1.13 GAA with 1,350 minutes in net.
For his career, he appeared in 62 matches (third all-time), started all of them (third all-time) and played 5,484 minutes (third all-time). Capon ranks fourth all-time in career GAA (1.17), second in career save percentage (.829) and second in career victories with 37. During his career, the Mountaineers posted a 37-19-6 record.
Capon earned All-South First Team honors in 1980 and 1981. He won the outstanding athlete award for soccer in 1980 from the WVU Athletic Council and was a finalist for the Hermann Trophy in his senior year. He also represented the United States in the 1981 Maccabiah Games where his team earned a silver medal.
Capon earned a bachelor’s degree in business management from West Virginia.
Avon Cobourne – Considered one of the greatest running backs in West Virginia football history, Avon Cobourne finished his career as WVU’s and the Big East’s rushing leader from 1999-2002, becoming the only player in school history to post four 1,000-yard rushing seasons.
A four-year starter and four-time All-Big East honoree from 1999-2002, Cobourne set WVU records for rushing yards in a season (1,710) and career (5,164), most 100-yard games in a season (10) and career (28), most carries in a season (335) and career (1,050), and tied the record for most consecutive 100-year games (six) and most touchdowns in a career (42).
A team captain as a junior and senior, the Camden, New Jersey, native holds the Big East record for most carries in a career, most 100-yard games in a career and rushing yards in a career.
Cobourne is tied for 16th in career rushing yards in NCAA history, including bowl games, and 22nd in career rushing without counting bowl games. He is one of 23 players in NCAA history to rush for 5,000 yards or more for his career.
As a senior in 2002, he finished with 1,710 yards and 17 touchdowns, earning All-Big East first-team honors and was tabbed a third-team Associated Press All-American. Cobourne set the WVU season rushing record, including a career-high 260 yards against East Carolina on his way to finishing No. 7 nationally in rushing at 131.5 yards per game. In 2002, he had 193 yards against Cincinnati and 175 yards against Miami.
In 2001, Cobourne finished with 1,298 yards and nine touchdowns, earning All-Big East second-team honors. He set a Mountaineer Field record with four touchdowns in just over two quarters against Rutgers. For the season, Cobourne had eight 100-yard games.
Cobourne finished with 1,018 yards rushing and six touchdowns as a sophomore in 2000, earning All-Big East second-team honors. He posted five 100-yard rushing performances, despite injuries, and ranked No. 3 in the Big East in rushing and No. 26 nationally. Cobourne registered a season-high 166 yards against Syracuse and had 125 yards in the win against Ole Miss in the Music City Bowl.
Finishing with 1,138 yards and 10 touchdowns as a freshman, Cobourne was a first-team freshman All-American by The Sporting News and first team All-Big East. He led the Big East in rushing (113.9) and set the WVU and Big East freshman rushing records. Cobourne tied for No. 16 in the nation in rushing and No. 35 in all-purpose yards.
Cobourne was signed by the Detroit Lions in 2003 after being undrafted. He played in seven games, recording seven carries for 27 yards, returning seven kickoffs for 123 yards and catching four passes for 30 yards. In 2004, he moved to the Lions practice squad and during the 2004 season, he played for the Cologne Centurions of NFL Europe, recording 525 yards on 117 carries. Cobourne signed with the Miami Dolphins for the 2005 NFL season but never played.
Cobourne then embarked on a six-year career in the Canadian Football League, beginning with the Montreal Alouettes in 2006. In his second year, while also playing linebacker, he became one of the league’s most feared returners. Cobourne finished third on the team in special teams tackles and rushed for 160 yards and two touchdowns.
He was the Alouettes’ starting running back in 2008, in which he finished with 1,557 all-purpose yards and was named a CFL East Division All-Star. Cobourne followed that up with an outstanding 2009 season, rushing for 1,214 yards and 13 touchdowns, culminating in CFL All-Star recognition and being named the MVP of the 2009 Grey Cup. In 2010, he finished with 956 yards rushing, 64 receptions and 550 yards receiving in helping the Alouettes to their second consecutive Grey Cup. Cobourne signed with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats in 2011, starting 17 games and two playoff games at running back. In his final season in 2012, he was named a CFL East Division All-Star for the third time of his career.
In 2014, he was a running backs coach for the Saskatchewan Roughriders and was a running backs coach for the Winnipeg Blue Bombers in 2016.
Cobourne has a degree in marketing from West Virginia. He and his wife, Rebecca, live in Charleston, W.Va., with three children, Avon III (Trey), Quion and Nova. Cobourne serves as the director of business development for the Charleston Family YMCA and owns a financial services marketing company, Primerica Financial Services.
Mike Gansey – Mike Gansey, who led WVU to the 2005 NCAA Elite Eight and the 2006 NCAA Sweet 16, is just one of nine Mountaineer basketball players to start every game of his WVU career.
Starting 68 games at WVU after transferring from St. Bonaventure, Gansey reached double figures in 25 games during the 2004-05 season, averaging 12.0 points per contest and scoring the most points on the team with 421. He led the Mountaineers in field goals (160), rebounds (180), rebounding average (5.1) and steals (57). Gansey led WVU to the championship game of the Big East Tournament and then to the NCAA Elite Eight, narrowly missing a spot in the NCAA Final Four with an overtime loss to Louisville. It was WVU’s highest finish in the NCAA Tournament since 1959.
In 2005-06, the Olmsted Falls, Ohio, native led the Mountaineers in scoring (16.8), rebounding (5.7), steals (62), rebounds (189), field goal percentage (55.0) and 3-point field goal percentage (42.9). Gansey made 75 three-point field goals, the fifth most in a season at WVU, and scored double figures in 30 games. He led the Mountaineers to the NCAA Sweet 16 with the Mountaineers falling on a buzzer beater to Texas in Atlanta.
Gansey was a part of 13 wins over ranked teams at WVU in two seasons. He hit the game-winning free throws against No. 19 Villanova in the semifinals of the 2005 Big East Tournament, scored 29 points in front of family and friends at Cleveland in a 111-105 win over No. 5 Wake Forest in the NCAA Second Round, defeated No. 7 Oklahoma in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, scored 21 points in WVU’s win at No. 3 Villanova and secured a late steal to preserve and score 24 points in WVU’s win at No. 18 UCLA in historic Pauley Pavilion.
At the time, Gansey tied a WVU school record when he hit eight three-point field goals to finish with a career-high 33 points against Marquette on Jan. 14, 2006. He currently ranks fourth in career three-point shooting at WVU at 39.4 percent.
Gansey finished with 976 points in his two seasons at WVU, and counting his two years at St. Bonaventure, scored 1,600 career points. He was a part of the 2005 USA World University Games team that won a Gold medal in Turkey, averaging 6.4 points and 3.4 rebounds per game.
In 2006, Gansey was named to the All-Big East First Team and was tabbed to the Big East All-Tournament Team in 2005. He was a two-time selection to the Big East Academic All-Star Team. In 2006, Gansey was a finalist for the Oscar Robertson Award, the John R. Wooden Award and the Naismith Trophy.
Gansey graduated from WVU in 2006 with a bachelor’s degree in criminology. Following his WVU career, he played professionally overseas for three seasons and in the NBA G League for two.
Gansey has served as the assistant general manager for the Cleveland Cavaliers since July 2017. He was previously general manager for the Canton Charge, the Cavaliers’ exclusively-owned NBA G League team, where he earned the 2016-17 NBA G League Executive of the Year award. Gansey presided over a Charge team that amassed a 29-21 regular-season record, securing Canton’s sixth consecutive trip to the NBA G League postseason that year.
Gansey held a leadership role in the Charge’s front office for five seasons (2012-2017), including two seasons as the general manager and three as director of G League operations. In addition to his role with the Charge, Gansey also served as a scout for the Cavaliers. He had previously spent the 2011-12 season as the Cavaliers’ basketball operations seasonal assistant.
In Gansey’s five seasons with Canton, the team had great success on the court. The Charge won a franchise-record 31 games twice (2014-15 and 2015-16), reached the postseason in all five seasons (the only NBA G League team to do so over that span) and reached the conference finals twice.
Gansey resides in Avon, Ohio, with his wife, Amy, daughters, Reagan and Emerson, and son, Griffin.
Tom Keane – Tom Keane was a rare lettermen in football at both West Virginia and Ohio State during the 1940s.
After an all-star high school career at Linsly Academy in Wheeling, West Virginia, the Bellaire, Ohio, native enrolled at Ohio State where the two-way back lettered as a freshman in 1944 on Ohio State’s undefeated, co-national championship team before serving 20 months in the United States Navy. Upon discharge, he enrolled at WVU and was a key contributor on the 1946 and 1947 teams.
Keane (pronounced Kane) was a second-round pick and 18th overall by the National Football League’s Los Angeles Rams in 1948. He played nine NFL seasons (87 games) as a defensive back-offensive end including the first four seasons with the Rams. In 1952, he played with the Dallas Texans before two seasons with the Baltimore Colts and ended his playing career in 1955 with the Chicago Cardinals.
He was a two-time All-Pro and played in the 1953 Pro Bowl, ranked second in the NFL in pass interceptions twice, and played in three NFL championship games including the 1951 Rams’ title team. From 1948-52, he and brother Jim Keane — the NFL’s leading pass receiver in 1947 while a Chicago Bear, played in the NFL.
Keane coached with the Chicago Cardinals from 1957-59 before returning to his native Ohio Valley where he became the first head coach of the Wheeling Ironmen professional football team for three seasons (1962-64). His 1962 and 1963 teams won United Football League championships, posting records of 9-4, 12-1 and 7-7.
Keane was a long-time assistant coach in the NFL, coaching in five Super Bowls with the Miami Dolphins. He returned to the NFL as an aide for the Pittsburgh Steelers in 1965 before joining the original staff of the Dolphins in 1966 where he remained until retiring in 1985 to cap a 38-year pro career as a player or coach.
In five trips to the Super Bowl with Miami, Keane saw the Dolphins twice crowned world champions (1972 and 1973). The 1972 Miami team established an all-time NFL record with a 17-0 record and one of Keane’s defensive backs, Jake Scott, was named MVP in the Super Bowl. The next year, the Dolphins allowed only five touchdown passes, with Keane’s secondary rating much of the credit.
Keane is a member of the Ohio Valley Athletic Conference and Upper Ohio Valley Dapper Dan Halls of Fame and was selected the 1982 Upper Ohio Valley Dapper Dan Co-Man of the Year with Philadelphia Eagles assistant coach Fred Bruney.
Keane, and his wife, Mary, had two daughters, Candi and Mary, and two sons, Tom and Tim.
He died at age 74 in 2001.
Larry Krutko – One of the best fullbacks in Mountaineer football history, Larry Krutko played at WVU from 1955-57 for coach Art “Pappy” Lewis.
The Carmichaels, Pa., native finished his three-year career with 297 carries for 1,407 yards, leading WVU in rushing yards in 1956 and 1957, while also playing linebacker on defense. Krutko currently ranks sixth in career rushing yards by a WVU fullback.
Krutko, who played in the Blue-Gray Collegiate Bowl Game in 1957, and the Senior Bowl and College All-Star Game in 1958, helped lead the Mountaineers to two Southern Conference championships. He is a member of the WVU All-Time Team from 1950-59.
As a senior in 1957, Krutko helped the Mountaineers to a 7-2-1 record while leading the Mountaineers’ rushing attack with 403 yards on 100 carries with a team-high five touchdowns. The Mountaineers finished the season No. 17 nationally in rushing, averaging 233.9 yards per game.
Krutko earned All-Southern Conference First Team honors in 1956, leading the Mountaineers in rushing with 584 yards on 124 carries. He scored four touchdowns, including the winning touchdowns against George Washington and the only touchdown in WVU’s 7-6 win at Texas.
As a sophomore in 1955, Krutko helped the Mountaineers to an 8-2 record with a No. 17 UPI ranking and No. 19 AP ranking. He finished with 420 yards on 73 carries, averaging 5.8 yards per carry. WVU was No. 6 nationally in rushing yards per game and No. 2 in total offense that season.
Krutko was chosen in the second round of the 1957 NFL Draft by the Pittsburgh Steelers. He played with the Steelers from 1958-60, appearing in 25 career games. He finished with 331 yards rushing on 96 carries and four touchdowns and 14 receptions for 108 yards. An ankle injury prematurely ended his pro career.
Krutko now makes his home in Waynesburg, Pa., with his wife, Betty. They own and operate a longtime wholesale grocery business with children Mary, Larry Jr., John and Andy, in Mount Morris, Pa.
Eleanor Lamb – Eleanor Lamb, a lifelong resident of Morgantown, spent 55 years working in the WVU Department of Intercollegiate Athletics from 1958-2013.
Lamb joined the WVU staff on June 9, 1958, as a secretary to then-athletic director Red Brown. She was named as an assistant to Brown in 1965 and was elevated to assistant athletic director on July 1, 1971, where she was involved with the financial details and arrangements of all athletic events. Lamb was the first female to hold a senior administrative role in the department’s history.
Lamb, who also worked with WVU athletic directors Leland Byrd, Dick Martin, Fred Schaus, Ed Pastilong and Oliver Luck, retired from full-time status on July 1, 1984. She then went on to work in the department on a part-time basis as an administrative assistant in the business office. Lamb retired from the department on March 31, 2013.
Prior to working at WVU, Lamb worked for WAJR radio in Morgantown and for WPDX in Clarksburg as director of continuity.
Lamb is a 1943 graduate of WVU with a bachelor’s degree in journalism. She has one son, Chris, and one grandson, Kazu.
Bev (Fry) Plocki – One of the nation’s top gymnastics coaches, Bev (Fry) Plocki competed in gymnastics at West Virginia from 1985-87, leading the Mountaineers to three appearances in the NCAA Regional Championships and a 23-win season in 1985.
A native of Butler, Pa., Plocki was a gymnast at Alabama before transferring to West Virginia and competing for fellow WVU Sports Hall of Fame member Linda Burdette-Good. In addition to the three NCAA Regional appearances, Plocki led WVU to three runner-up finishes in the Atlantic 10 Conference. The 1987 team captain, Plocki earned a spot on the 1987 All-Atlantic 10 Bars Team and won the 1986 Sally Medrick Award as the team’s most improved gymnast.
Plocki recently wrapped up her 29th season as head coach of the Michigan women’s gymnastics program. She has led the Wolverines to 23 Big Ten championships, tied for the most by any coach in Big Ten history. Plocki has led the Wolverines to four Big Ten regular-season titles, 23 NCAA Championship appearances and 10 NCAA Super Six berths.
Plocki is an 11-time Big Ten Coach of the Year, nine-time NCAA Regional Coach of the Year and was the 1994 NCAA National Coach of the Year. She has led Michigan to 11 NCAA Regional titles and has guided the Wolverines to two national runner-up finishes. Under her tutelage, Michigan captured a Big Ten-record seven conference titles in a row from 1999-2005, while her student-athletes have secured 177 NCAA All-America honors and eight NCAA individual national titles.
Plocki inherited a program in 1990 that had finished no better than fourth at the Big Ten Championship in the seven seasons prior to her arrival. In 1989, the year before Plocki took over, the Wolverines finished last in the Big Ten with a 2-19 overall record and were a winless 0-13 in the Big Ten. She took Michigan from a seven-win team in her first year (1990) to a 20-win team in her third year (1992), while also securing the program’s second Big Ten title and second NCAA Championships appearance. She also captured the first of what would be four straight Big Ten Coach of the Year awards in 1992, while earning the first of four NCAA Regional Coach of the Year trophies.
In 29 seasons at Michigan, Plocki has coached four Michigan gymnasts to a total of eight individual national championships. Additionally, 46 of her student-athletes have combined to receive 177 NCAA All-America citations. Her gymnasts have also received a total of 157 All-Big Ten honors and won or tied for 93 Big Ten individual event titles. Plocki has coached 12 Big Ten Gymnast of the Year winners and 12 Big Ten Freshman of the Year award winners.
Plocki’s student-athletes have excelled in the classroom with 181 Academic All-Big Ten honors and 112 student-athletes earning National Association of Collegiate Gymnastics Coaches (NACGC) Scholastic All-America accolades.
In 1994, Plocki received her greatest coaching honor to date when she won the NCAA National Coach of the Year award after guiding the Wolverines to a program-best 27-1 record and a fourth-place finish at the NCAA Championships, boasting six All-Americans and sweeping the Big Ten individual event titles and conference postseason awards.
Plocki earned a bachelor’s degree from West Virginia in physical education in 1987 and a master’s degree in sport management and administration in 1989, also from WVU. She is a graduate of the NCAA Women’s Coaches Academy (Dimension II) where she was the recipient of the Judy Sweet Sprit Award in 2007.
Plocki and her husband, Jim, have two children, Elizabeth and Tyler.
Steve Slaton – Steve Slaton was one of the top play-making running backs in the nation from 2005-07, earning consensus All-America honors in 2006.
The Levittown, Pa., native rewrote the WVU and Big East record books during his three-year career as a Mountaineer, helping the Mountaineers to bowl wins in the 2005 Sugar Bowl, 2006 Gator Bowl and 2007 Fiesta Bowl.
For his WVU career, he ranks first in rushing touchdowns (50), total touchdowns (55) and total points by a non-kicker (330), and ranks second in total 100-yard rushing games (21), all-purpose yards (4,775), all-time receiving yards by a running back (805) and second in Big East history in total touchdowns with 53. Slaton left WVU third all-time in rushing yards with 3,923 for his career. He and Pat White became the third duo in FBS history to rush for 1,000 yards in consecutive seasons.
In the WVU season record books list, Slaton posted the most rushing yards in a season with 1,744, most all-purpose yards in a season with 2,104, tied for the most consecutive 100-yard rushing games with six and most rushing yards in Big East history by a true freshman with 1,128 yards. He ranks first (19) and third (18) for most touchdowns (rushing and receiving) in a season, and ranks second for most receiving yards by a running back with 360.
Slaton scored the most touchdowns by a WVU player when he posted six against Louisville on Oct. 15, 2005. Against Pitt, he became the first Mountaineer to ever have 100 yards rushing (215) and 100 yards receiving (130) in the same game. Slaton and White became only the third tandem in NCAA Division I history to both rush for 200 yards or more yards in a single game against the Panthers. The 215 yards rushing and the 130 yards receiving against Pitt were both career bests for Slaton.
In 2005, Slaton emerged as WVU’s lead tailback as a true freshman, rushing for 1,128 yards in 10 games and scoring 19 touchdowns. He was the 2005 Big East Rookie of the Year while earning first team freshman All-America honors by Rivals and second team honors by The Sporting News, CollegeFootballNews and Scout. He was one point shy of setting the school record for points in a game when he posted 36 against Louisville. WVU finished the regular season 10-1 and 7-0 in the Big East. Slaton ended the season as the Sugar Bowl MVP with 204 yards rushing in the win over Georgia, highlighted by a pair of 52-yard touchdown runs. His 204 yards were not only a Sugar Bowl record, but the second most rushing yards ever in a BCS game.
As a sophomore, Slaton earned consensus All-America honors when he set a WVU record with 1,744 yards rushing in a season and ranked fourth in NCAA rushing. He was one of three Doak Walker finalists, finished fourth in the Heisman Trophy balloting and was a Maxwell Award semifinalist. Slaton earned First Team All-America honors by the AFCA, FWAA, Walter Camp, The Sporting News, AP and Scout. His season rushing total was a WVU rushing record for a season, breaking Avon Cobourne’s record of 1,710 yards. Slaton and White combined for 2,963 yards and 34 rushing touchdowns. They also combined for 4,978 total yards and 49 total touchdowns together.
In his final season as a Mountaineer, he accumulated 1,051 yards and scored 17 touchdowns, posting his third straight year of 1,000 or more yards rushing. He led WVU to another Big East title and a Fiesta Bowl win over Oklahoma. Slaton broke Ira Rodgers’ WVU record in career rushing touchdowns with 50. He left WVU as the No. 1 active points per game leader (9.4), No. 1 in touchdowns (50), No. 5 in yards per game (109.0) and No. 3 in rushing yards (3,923).
Slaton entered the 2008 NFL Draft after his junior season and was selected in the third round by the Houston Texans. He played four years for the Texans (2008-11), one for the Miami Dolphins (2011) and finished his career in the Canadian Football League with the Toronto Argonauts (2014). He finished his NFL career with 1,896 rushing yards, averaging 4.3 yards per carry and scored 13 touchdowns. Slaton had 99 catches for 809 yards and five touchdowns. Slaton was just the second WVU running back to rush for more than 1,000 yards in an NFL season as a rookie (1,282 yards) in 2008, along with Adrian Murrell (1993).
Slaton and his wife, Kimberly, have two children, Brennan and Darla. After retiring from football, Slaton enrolled in culinary school in Houston and is a personal chef and kitchen consultant.
Pat White – Pat White was the nation’s most versatile threat at quarterback, becoming the first college quarterback to start and win four consecutive bowl games from 2005-08.
The Daphne, Ala., native set 19 WVU, Big East and national records during his illustrious career, including finishing as the all-time rushing quarterback in NCAA history with 4,480 yards (now ranks second).
West Virginia was 35-8 with White as the starting quarterback. He led the Mountaineers to bowl wins in the 2006 Sugar, 2007 Gator, 2008 Fiesta and 2008 Meineke Car Care. White set the Big East records in touchdowns responsible for (103), total offense (10,529) and became the first player in Big East history to pass for more than 10,000 yards. He posted a 7-2 record against Top 25 opponents during his career.
As a freshman in 2005, White earned first team freshman All-America honors by The Sporting News, Scout and College Football News, leading WVU to a BIG East title, finishing the season 10-1 and 7-0 in the Big East. He ranked second in WVU all-time freshman rushing with 952 yards and seven touchdowns. That season, he set a Big East and WVU quarterback rushing record with 220 yards against Pitt, breaking the Big East mark of 210 yards set by Michael Vick of Virginia Tech. The season culminated with White leading the Mountaineers to a win over No. 8 Georgia in the Sugar Bowl.
White was named the Big East Offensive Player of the Year in 2006 and was a semifinalist for the Davey O’Brien Award. White broke his own school and Big East record for rushing yards by a quarterback when he ran for 247 yards against Syracuse, the fourth-best single game rushing effort in WVU history. Against Pitt, he rushed for 220 yards and threw for 204, becoming one of only eight players in NCAA history to rush and pass for 200 yards in the same game. His 424 yards of total offensive tied Marc Bulger’s school record. White directed the Mountaineers to a Gator Bowl win over Georgia Tech and earned Gator Bowl MVP honors.
As a junior in 2007, White was named Big East Offensive Player of the Year for the second straight year as well as earning All-Big East First Team honors for the second consecutive year, while leading WVU to another Big East title. He was named a semifinalist for the O’Brien Award and Walter Camp Player of the Year awards while finishing sixth in the Heisman Trophy balloting. White led the Mountaineers in rushing with 1,335 yards, threw for 1,724 yards and accumulated 3,059 yards of total offense with 28 touchdowns. The season ended with WVU’s second BCS victory in three years with a Fiesta Bowl win over No. 3 Oklahoma and he earned Fiesta Bowl Offensive MVP honors.
In White’s final season, he eclipsed the 4,000-yard rushing, 6,000-yard passing, 10,000-yard total offense and 4,000-yard all-purpose yardage marks. He finished his career fourth on the school’s all-time all-purpose yardage list with 4,480 yards. For the season, White ran for 974 yards and eight touchdowns and passed for 1,842 yards and 21 touchdowns. He threw for a career-best and bowl-best 332 yards on 26-of-32 passing and three touchdowns in the win against North Carolina in the Meineke Car Care Bowl. That season, he threw for five touchdowns against Villanova, setting a Milan Puskar Stadium record (the second most in a game in school history). White was named All-Big East First Team for the third straight year and was a finalist for the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Senior Award.
White was drafted in the second round of the NFL Draft by the Miami Dolphins, playing the 2009 season with the Dolphins. He played on the practice squad for the Virginia Destroyers of the United Football League in 2011, signed with the Washington Redskins in 2013 and then played one season for the Edmonton Eskimos of the Canadian Football League in 2014. He announced his retirement from professional football in 2015. Also a standout on the diamond, White was selected by the Anaheim Angels in the fourth round of the 2004 Major League Basketball draft, but opted to attend WVU. White was drafted in the later rounds of the 2007 MLB Draft by the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, in 2008 by the Cincinnati Reds and in 2009 by the New York Yankees. He signed a minor league contract with the Kansas City Royals in 2010 and with the Miami Marlins in 2013.
White graduated from WVU in 2008 with a Regents Bachelor of Arts degree. He has two daughters, Daphne Ruth White and Clara Vonne Marie White. In April 2018, White was hired as the quarterbacks coach at Alcorn State, working for offensive coordinator Ryan Stanchek, a teammate at WVU.
Web Wright – One of the best marksmen in WVU rifle history, Lt. Col. (Retired) Web Wright III was a seven time All-American and two-time national champion at West Virginia from 1985-89.
Wright led the Mountaineers to three national titles in 1986, 1988 and 1989. He was the only two-time NCAA smallbore national champion (1987 and 1988) in WVU history until 2018.
Wright was a four-time, first-team All-American in smallbore during his career and a first-team air rifle All-American during his senior season. He was named a second-team All-American in air rifle in 1986 and 1987. Wright was a two-time team MVP and team captain of the 1988-89 team.
A native of Annapolis, Md., Wright represented the United States at the 1988 Olympics in Seoul, South Korea. He earned a gold medal in the 1986 Zurich World Cup and was a bronze medalist in the 1987 Seoul World Cup where he set the World Record in smallbore kneeling, scoring a 399 out of 400. Wright was also a medalist at the 1987 and 1995 Pan American Games, and was a member of the 1994 Gold Medal World Championship 300 Meter Standard Rifle in Tolmezzo, Italy.
Wright, who competed with the US Army Marksmanship Unit from 1991 until 1996, served at the tactical, operational and strategic levels throughout his career in the Army. He served two deployments to Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom and one deployment to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom with the famed 10th Mountain Division. Wright’s combat deployment experience spanned a total of 3 ½ years. His army awards include the Legion of Merit, Bronze Star, Meritorious Service Medal, Combat Action Badge and Army Parachutist Badge.
Since 2012, Wright has played an integral role with the Army West Point rifle team. At Army, he began as the team’s Officer Representative before being named the 25th head coach of the program in 2015. Throughout his time with the Black Knights, Army has made four NCAA appearances with four marksmen going on to earn All-America honors.
Growing up, Wright was always around the sport. His father, who began teaching him to shoot at age eight, was the head rifle coach at Navy in the 1970s and ‘80s.
He credits his success to his parents’ unfaltering support and love.
Wright and his wife, Jen, have three kids, Maggie, Drew and Suzy.