Inside this April 2010 edition of the L Club Newsletter:
- L Club Welcome
- All About YOU
- Vining, Folston, Lindstrom To Enter ULM Hall of Fame
- Third annual Super Warhawk Weekend set for April 23-25
- L Club's Strength Summitt attracts big speakers, big crowd
- EDITOR'S NOTEBOOK: Vining To Enter Louisiana Hall of Fame
- Strength Summit is big success
- ULM Athletic Foundation offers new membership programs
- Show Your Warhawk Pride!
- L Club Wrap-up
L Club Welcome
In all the years I have been involved with the L-Club, I have never been more personally satisfied in spearheading membership driven initiatives. As my presidency is in its twilight hours, I am proud to have served you and your interests.
The L-Club has been as successful this year as any other group on campus. Not only have we had numerous team reunions, social events and forward thinking members putting on ground breaking functions but we have placed the ULM L-Club on “the map” to individuals across the United States and in many countries.
In March, we hosted The Summit of Strength & Conditioning and Sport Medicine Leaders, an event that was the brain child of Coach Al Miller. When presented with the idea, I knew it was a “home run” event that compliments the mission and vision of our organization. I must admit that it is amazing watching Al call, on his cell phone, Al Vermeil, Chris Mortenson or Dan Reeves (for example) and then hand the phone to me with Al saying “just say a few words, Doc”. Me? Say a few words to my childhood idols? Are you nuts? (I am daddy’s little boy and I grew up in a football locker room and weight room). I was shaking and sweating like I was getting ready to run a race!
After I got over the initial shock that these individuals actually craved the interaction and service to their professions (and talk openly to a nobody like me), I have formed a long-term relationship with 18 presenters, 403 participants and 57 volunteers that I never dreamed possible. “If you build it, they will come” and they did! This would never have been possible without your help, the Board, countless volunteers and the drive of Mr. Robert Williamson, Mr. Jeff Hendrix and Ms. Cathie Nettermeyer. I was merely a guide, a tool for direction, and proudly served in that capacity. People across the country now know who and where ULM is, what graduate and continuing education can be received at our institution and appreciated the time and the love the L-Club Board and its members put into organizing such an enormous event. I am humbled and amazed at the response and feedback received from this marquee event for our organization.
I hope this newsletter finds you and yours healthy, happy and at peace. This is just the start of many exciting events to come for your organization. Don’t forget about the Hall of Fame Banquet and Super Warhawk Weekend April 23-25.
Get involved, reach out and have faith that everything is possible.
All About YOU
by Bob Anderson
Chuck McCullen (MTr, 1957-59) has been busy lately talking up a Track Reunion for April 24, the date of the Warhawk Classic Track Meet, during Super Warhawk Weekend.
The reunion is for all ex-track athletes with particular emphasis on those who competed in the 1950’s and 1960’s. The honored guest will be Lew Hartzog, the man who started ULM’s great track tradition when he brought the Styron twins, Dave and Don, to what was then Northeast Louisiana State College in the 1957-58 school year.
Led by the Styrons, who had run for Hartzog at Wheat Ridge, Colorado, High School, ULM won the Gulf States Conference track championship in 1959 and then went undefeated in 1960 against some of the best teams in the country. Hartzog left after the 1960 season to go to Southern Illinois but Bob Groseclose came on to lead ULM to continued success in track and field.
Ex-ULM coach Dennis Groll and former sprinter Charlie McDonald are helping McCullen round up members of Hartzog’s teams while Holiday Inn and Davis Hardy’s Hertz Rent-A-Car are also helping. It promises to be a great affair to be climaxed by watching current ULM Coach J.D. Malone’s team compete in the Warhawk Classic.
This is not exactly “hot off the press” news by now but All-American and All-Star pitcher Ben Sheets (BB, 97-99) is now with the Oakland A’s after missing the 2009 season to have elbow surgery.
He showed off the repaired elbow at Warhawk Field Jan. 19 to 15 major league scouts and showed enough to earn a $10-million, one-year contract with the A’s.
There is other news about Mike Vining in the newsletter but the latest is that Mike and Monroe Mayor Jamie Mayo (MBkB, 76-79) are together again for the third time. The first time was at Bastrop High School when Vining coached the Rams and Mayo was the point guard on a state championship team. The second time was in the 1970’s when Mayo again played his role as point guard on some of the greatest teams in ULM history and Vining was an assistant coach under Lenny Fant.
Now they are together again at City Hall where Vining is now Mayor Mayo’s new executive administrator. Sounds like another winning combination!
Another familiar face on Mayor Mayo’s staff is former ULM ticket manager Sharon Traxler who was recently hired as events coordinator at the Civic Center.
Former ULM defensive tackle Jim Lieux (FB, 81-82) is now an assistant coach at Woodlawn High School in his hometown of Baton Rouge. Jim was on the campus recently for the Strength & Conditioning Summit.
We’re sorry to report the recent deaths of two former ULM sports stars. Devone Payne Jr. (FB, 60-62) died March 8 in Little Rock of cancer at age 68. The son of Coach Devone Payne Sr., ULM’s football head coach in 1954-57, Devone was a starting fullback for the then-Indians and enjoyed his biggest game with touchdown runs of 10 and 78 yards in a 27-20 victory over Louisiana-Lafayette in Shreveport’s State Fair Stadium in 1961.
Earlier, in January, ex-ULM outfielder Albert F. “Ike” McMullen died at age 73. Ike, of Monroe, was a standout player in the 1956-59 seasons before earning a degree in business administration.
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Vining, Folston, Lindstrom To Enter ULM Hall of Fame
ULM’s and the Southland Conference’s all-time leading coaching winner in basketball, one of the university’s most honored football players and an all-American women’s tennis player will become members of the Sports Hall of Fame in ceremonies on the campus April 24.
Coach Mike Vining, linebacker-defensive end James Folston and tennis All-American Maria Lindstrom will become the 118th, 119th and 200th members of the Hall of Fame at the April 24 induction. The Hall of Fame ceremonies will begin at 10 a.m. in the ULM Conference Center, located on the 7th floor of the ULM Library. They will be a part of the university’s Super Warhawk Weekend activities (April 23-25) with other events to include the Spring Maroon and Gold Football Game, a track meet, and baseball and softball action.
Vining, who will later in the year be inducted into the Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame, coached 401 wins at ULM, a school record. He also holds the record for most wins for a Southland Conference coach with 382—ULM was a member of the Trans-America Conference (now the Atlantic Sun) during Vining’s first year as head coach.
Vining, a native of Goodwill in West Carroll Parish, also holds the record for most SLC championships, winning the season title eight times and claiming another crown by winning the conference tournament. His teams participated in seven NCAA Tournaments and one National Invitation Tournament.
His 24 years as head coach were only part of Vining’s long association with ULM. He came to the university in 1962, played four years under coach Lenny Fant, later served as a graduate assistant coach while working on his master’s degree and then came back as a full-time assistant in 1978 after service as an Army officers, including at stint in Viet Nam, and a state championship coach at Bastrop High School. He served under both Coach Fant and Benny Hollis before becoming head coach in 1982.
Folston was an all-American football player at ULM under Coach Dave Roberts and left as the school’s all-time sack leader with 27 for 143 yards. From Cocoa, Fla, Folston played from 1990-93 and was an all-Southland Conference first team selection his final two seasons.
Following his senior season in 1993, Folston was named to all-America first teams selected by the Associated Press, the Walter Camp Foundation and the Football Gazette and was a second team choice on the Sports Network squad. He won ULM’s Iron Man Award and was selected to play in both the East-West Shrine Game and the Hula Bowl.
In the 1994 National Football League draft, Folston was a second-round choice of the Oakland Raiders. Only one other ULM player was ever drafted higher, running back Joe Profit being a first round selection in 1971. He spent eight seasons in the NFL, five with the Raiders and then three with the Arizona Cardinals.
Lindstrom played only two years at ULM but these two were enough to establish her as one of the greatest tennis players in school history. He finished her career with the highest winning percentage in singles ever with .852 percent on 92 victories against only 16 defeats. She also holds the school record for most singles victories in a season with 61 against only 11 losses for .847 percent, also a record.
Already a veteran of the European tennis circuit when she came to ULM in 1984, Lindstrom quickly established herself as one of the top college players in America. She won the Southland Conference title at No. 1 singles and teamed with another Swede, Pernilla Hallberg, to take the No. 1 doubles crown as well as ULM swept to the team title. She then became the first ULM woman to play in the NCAA Tournament, winning her first match before falling to the eventual national champion in her second.
As a sophomore in 1985, Lindstrom led ULM to a dazzling 19-3 spring record including a victory over No. 18 Southern Methodist. After being something of an unknown quality before the 1984 NCAA tourney, Lindstrom went into the 1985 meet as the No. 12 collegiate player in the country. She reached the round of 16 in the NCAA meet to become ULM’s second all-American and first to earn that honor in the NCAA.
Following her sophomore year, Lindstrom left college to turn professional. She now lives in her native Sweden and will make the longest trip of any ULM Hall of Fame member in history to attend the induction ceremonies.
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ULM’s Third Annual Super Warhawk Weekend featuring the Maroon & Gold football game, the ULM Hall of Fame induction ceremony, Sun Belt Conference baseball and softball series and the ULM Warhawk Classic Track & Field Meet will take place April 23-25 on the ULM campus.
The Warhawk baseball and softball teams will jump start the weekend’s activities with games against Florida Atlantic on Friday evening.
Saturday’s busy schedule includes the Maroon and Gold football game, the ULM Hall of Fame induction ceremony, game two of the baseball series, game three of the softball series and the track meet. The ULM Alumni Association will also hold its annual La' Louisianne Crawfish Boil following the football game.
The series finale at Warhawk Field between ULM and Florida Atlantic on Sunday will mark the culmination of the weekend-long celebration.
L Club's Strength Summit attracts big speakers, big crowd
The L Club’s Summit of Strength & Conditioning and Sports Medicine Leaders Feb. 19-20 was a big success.
The event attracted 343 paid attendees from a total of 15 states (Louisiana, Mississippi, Texas Iowa, Florida, Alabama, South Carolina, Arkansas, Virginia, New Mexico, Georgia, Missouri, Oklahoma, California and Colorado) and three foreign countries (Australia, Mexico and Canada).
Keynote speakers at the conference were Dan Reeves, who coached more than 200 winning games in the National Football League with the Denver Broncos, the New York Giants, and the Atlanta Falcons; award-winning ESPN journalist Chris Mortensen; and NFL Vice President for Football Operations Ron Hill.
Speaking on strength and sports medicine topics at the Summit were former ULM football star and longtime NFL strength coach Al Miller (shown above), Al Vermeil, Billy “White Shoes” Johnson, Dr. Don Chu, former ULM trainer Barry Rubin, now with the Philadelphia Eagles, Dr. Al Stubbs, Rob Panariello, Monroe native Bill Johnson of the world champion New Orleans Saints, Troy Jacobson, Dr. Brett Casio, Steve Antonopoulos, Dr. Mike Stone, Johnny Parker and ex-major league pitcher Darren Holmes.
Sessions of the Summit were held in Malone Stadium, the ULM Activity Center, Fant-Ewing Coliseum and the ULM Library.
The Summit was presented by the L Club, the ULM Graduate School and the Department of Kinesiology. Major sponsors were the City of Monroe, St. Francis Medical Center, St. Francis Cardiovascular Surgery Clinic and Hamner Nutrition.
In addition to the high school and college coaches, strength coaches and athletic trainers who attended the conference, numerous ULM students also attended the sessions.
A total of 134 persons received Continuing Education credits by attending the Summit, according to ULM Graduate School Interim Dean Lisa Colvin.
The Summit was the brainchild of Al Miller, recognized as one of the top strength coaches in the world during his years as a college and NFL coach. Miller worked in the NFL for 24 years at the Broncos, Giants and Falcons after extensive college experience at ULM, Mississippi State, Alabama and Northwestern State. He conceived the idea for the conference, which included probably the greatest collection of experts in the strength and conditioning field ever assembled, and lined up the speakers.
Others who played major roles in arranging the event were L Club Director Robert Williamson, Dr. Lisa Colvin and her assistant, Jeff Hendrix.
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EDITOR'S NOTEBOOK: Vining To Enter Louisiana Hall of Fame
By Bob Anderson
First he’s going to be inducted into the ULM Hall of Fame in April but an even greater honor is coming for Mike Vining in June. That’s when the former Warhawk basketball coach will be inducted into the Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame in ceremonies at Natchitoches.
Mike is the 15th coach or athlete with a ULM background to be voted into the state Hall of Fame and certainly one of the most deserving, being one of only three Louisiana college men’s basketball coaches to have coached 400 or more victories. The others were Dale Brown of LSU and Fred Hobdy of Grambling.
Previous ULM figures inducted into the state Hall of Fame are John Pennel and John David Crow in 1976, Dave and Don Styron in 1977, Glynn Saulters in 1981, Johnny Robinson in 1984, Lenny Fant in 1988, Bob Groseclose in 1992, Calvin Natt in 1993, Eun Jung Lee Ok in 1998, Joe Profit in 1999, Chick Childress in 2001, Chuck Finley in 2006, and Stan Humphries in 2007. Crow and Robinson coached at ULM but each was voted into the Hall of Fame primarily for their college and professional football exploits and Childress went in mainly on the basis of his high school coaching record.
In addition to his great coaching success, Vining was also a versatile and talented athlete, too, first at Forest High School in West Carroll Parish and then at ULM where he was an all-conference baseball pitcher in addition to lettering in basketball for four years.
Vining’s numerous additional honors are detailed in other parts of this newsletter but the affection that ULM fans feel for Mike goes beyond honors and victories. Like his mentor, Lenny Fant, Mike always was a loyal NLU-ULM man, passing up chances for bigger paychecks and higher profile jobs to stay close to his roots.
He was a graduate assistant coach under Fant and then, after Army service in Vietnam, returned to northeastern Louisiana to coach for seven very successful years at Bastrop High, a tenure highlighted by a state championship in 1975. He sent seven of his players to his alma mater, including some of the greatest stars in the university’s history. He came back to ULM in 1978 to serve as an assistant to first Fant and then Benny Hollis before becoming head coach in 1981.
Even after retiring as coach in 2005, he remained on campus as director of Ewing Coliseum before leaving in January of this year to become executive administrator under Monroe Mayor Jamie Mayo, Vining’s point guard at both Bastrop and NLU.
Strength Summitt is big success
The Summit of Strength & Conditioning and Sports Medicine Leaders at ULM Feb. 19-20 was a tremendous success any way you look at it.
First there were the Big Names.
The keynote speakers were former NFL head coach Dan Reeves (shown at right), award winning reporter Chris Mortensen of ESPN and NFL Vice President of Football Operations Ron Hill.
Other presenters included most of the top names in the fields of strength and conditioning and sports medicine—names like our own Al Miller and Barry Rubin, Billy “White Shoes” Johnson, Darren Holmes, Monroe’s Bill Johnson, Johnny Parker, Steve Antonopulos, Dr. Don Chu, Dr. Mike Stone, Al Vermeil, Rob Panariello, Dr. Allston Stubbs, Troy Jacobson and Dr. Brett Cascio.
There were Big Numbers.
Three hundred and forty three college and high school coaches, trainers, and strength coaches attended from 15 states and three foreign countries, plus approximately 60 college students from ULM and other schools.
There was Big Enthusiasm.
There are many people to thank for this event but there is no doubt who was the No. 1 reason the Summit was held and was a big success. That’s Al Miller. Al conceived this idea, involved the L Club and his prestige and long years in the strength and conditioning business were the reason so many big names in the field agreed to appear. So next time you see Al, tell him “Thanks.”
Others who played big roles in organizing and conducting the conference were L Club Executive Director Robert Williamson, L Club President and Graduate School Interim Dean Lisa Colvin and her assistant, Jeff Hendrix. This was a big job and these people worked very hard to make the success it was.
Our thanks also go to our sponsors led by Mayor Jamie Mayo and the City of Monroe, who donated $10,000. Additional major sponsors were St. Francis Medical Center, St. Francis Surgery Center, the Monroe-West Monroe Convention and Visitors Bureau and Aramark.
Other sponsors included the National Sports Conditioning Association, Raising Cane’s, Green Sports, Community Trust Bank, Capital One Bank, Kate Dishman Rehabilitation Hospital of Beaumont, Tex., and Marsala Beverage. Johnny’s Pizza, Fox’s Pizza and The Fieldhouse donated door prizes.
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ULM Athletic Foundation offers new membership programs
Join the ULM Athletic Foundation and help ULM's student-athletes while enjoying the many benefits of membership. It's easy to join or update your membership.
ULM Athletic Foundation offers new membership programs
The ULM Athletic Foundation has added several new exciting membership programs: the "Young Grads" program and the "Jr. Warhawk" program.
The "Young Grad" program is for any ULM alum who has graduated in the last five (5) years and is an excellant way for young alumni to support ULM athletics at an entry level. Membership is $50.00 per year and includes:
• Warhawk Frequent Flyer Pass (all sport plan – general admission seating)
• Invitation to Annual Kick-Off Party
• Preferred football parking permit
• Athletic Foundation Car Decal
The "Jr. Warhawk" program is a special membership for Warhawk fans age 12 and younger! Membership is $20.00 and all Jr. Warhawk Club members receive:
• Season ticket to all home Warhawk athletic events
• Jr. Warhawk Club T-shirt and membership card
• Invitation to exclusive Jr. Warhawk Club events
• Name on Jr. Warhawk Club Web site
• Autographed picture of Ace
• E-Birthday card (sent to parent ’s email)
The ULM Athletic Foundation is the pillar of support for ULM Athletics. It is composed of individuals and businesses with a common mission, which is as follows:
The mission of the ULM Athletic foundation is to raise awareness and financial support for the Warhawk athletic programs, positively promote all athletic events, grow the Warhawk fan and donor base, and enhance the lives of over 300 student-athletes.
For more information about any of membership programs available from the ULM Athletic Foundation, contact Dan O’Dowd, Executive Director of the ULM Athletic Foundation at 318-342-5428 or email@example.com.
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Show Your Warhawk Pride!
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L Club Wrap Up From the L Club Executive Director
Hello former athletes, support staff and coaches,
I hope this message finds you and yours doing well thus far in 2010. I would like to take just a few moments to echo Lisa Colvin’s sentiments in regards to the overwhelming success of the Summit of Strength & Conditioning and Sports Medicine. This was an event that was an undertaking of love and dedication by the planning team and the volunteers who worked tirelessly to make sure this was a success.
The speakers were impressed by the hospitality and the interest in this project. This event really helped put the University and your L-Club in the minds of some very influential individuals.
Preliminary talks have begun on the possibility of having a Summit II next spring. We will keep you updated.
The Hall of Fame Class of 2010 will be inducted on April 24 at 10:00 a.m. in the University Conference Center, located on the 7th floor of the ULM Library. This is the Saturday of Warhawk Weekend and I really would love to see many of you back on campus for this and all the other scheduled events. (www.ulm.edu/super)
The Class of 2010 consists of Maria Lindstrom (Womens Tennis, 1984 & 1985), James E. Folston (Football 1990-1993) and Coach Mike Vining (1982-2005). This is an outstanding class that represented their sports and the University with honor, dignity, and grace during their careers here at ULM. They deserve to be welcomed into the ULM Hall of Fame by a full audience the morning of April 24. Tickets are on sale now at the ULM Alumni Center (342-5420 / 866-WARHAWK).
Thanks again for joining the Letterman’s Club and your continued support of the University of Louisiana at Monroe and the athletes currently competing for the Maroon and Gold!
See you April 23-25 at Super Warhawk Weekend and the Hall of Fame Inductions.
L Club Executive Director
(318) 342-5428 /822-927-4295