Marshall Athletics Announces 2017 Hall of Fame Class|
March 23, 2017
Amanda Williams Paz – Softball, 2003-06
Ahmad Bradshaw, Football, 2004-06
Bradshaw was a top-five running back for the Herd in just three seasons. He finished his career fourth in all-purpose yards per game (124.8), sixth in rushing touchdowns (31), eighth in total touchdowns (36) and 10th in scoring (216 points). His 1,523 rushing yards in 2006 was the school’s fifth-best single-season total, while his 21 touchdowns were the sixth-highest and his 126 points stood eighth. Bradshaw posted 11 100+ yard games at Marshall, with his best effort coming on Nov. 18, 2006, when he put up a Joan C. Edwards Stadium-record five touchdowns and 261 yards against UTEP. He led the Herd in all-purpose yards all three seasons and caught 86 passes for 696 yards, scoring five more times through the air. He was named second team All-Conference USA as a junior, then first-team as a senior. After Marshall, Bradshaw was taken in the seventh round of the 2007 NFL Draft by the New York Giants, who went on to beat New England in Super Bowl XLII. He had a career-best nine touchdowns in 2011, including the game-winner for the Giants in Super Bowl XLVI, as New York beat the Patriots again to earn his second Super Bowl ring. Bradshaw signed with the Indianapolis Colts in 2012, where he finished his career. In the NFL, Bradshaw finished with 1,083 carries for 4,928 yards (4.6 per carry), for 36 touchdowns in nine seasons. He also caught 187 passes for 1,493 yards and 10 more touchdowns. In all, he had 8,193 yards of all-purpose yardage in the regular season, then 1,850 yards in the post-season, as well as 36 tackles on special teams (average of four per season played).
Bob Gray, Men’s Soccer Coach, 1995-2016
Gray retired in November of 2016 after 22 seasons as the Marshall head coach. He finished as the third-winningest active college coach in the nation with a record of 445-268-60 (.614), with 190 of those victories coming with the Thundering Herd. At the conclusion of Gray’s career, only 22 college head coaches had ever amassed more victories – and only 10 of those have coached at the NCAA Division I level. In his time at Marshall, 79 of Gray’s players received all-conference honors and six players received conference specialty awards, including 2012 Conference USA Player of the Year Daniel Withrow and two-time (2000 and 2002) Mid-American Conference Player of the Year Byron Carmichael. His players also excelled in the classroom, racking up 156 selections on the Conference USA Commissioner’s Honor Roll for a GPA of 3.0 or better during an academic year, and 31 C-USA Academic Medalists for a GPA of 3.75 or higher during an academic year. Gray has also been very involved in youth soccer, serving as director of the West Virginia Rowdies organization, which won several state championships. In 2004, he was appointed to the United State Soccer Federation national instructional staff. Gray is a member of the Alderson Broaddus Athletic Hall of Fame (1993), the NAIA Hall of Fame (1998) and the West Virginia Soccer Association Hall of Fame (2015). He was named his conference’s coach of the year eight times, including three at Marshall (2000 in the Mid-American Conference and 2005 and 2009 in Conference USA). His teams reached the Conference USA championship match in 2009 and 2015.
Eric Ihnat, Football, 1987-90
Ihnat was an All-American tight end and four-year letter winner for the Thundering Herd. He was named All-American by the Associated Press (first team), Walter Camp-American Football Coaches Association (first team) and to the Sports Network (second team). He served as a captain for first-year head coach Jim Donnan in 1990 and was first-team All-Southern Conference in both 1989 and 1990. During his senior season, he led the Herd with 55 catches and finished with 592 yards and three touchdowns. For his career, he caught 96 passes for 1,137 yards and 11 touchdowns. Among all Marshall tight ends (since 1965), Ihnat is fourth in touchdowns and sixth in catches and yards, despite playing with Marshall Hall of Fame tight ends Sean Doctor and Mike Bartrum. During his time with Herd, Marshall was 10-5 and a I-AA finalist in 1987, 11-2 and first-time SoCon champs (I-AA second round) in 1988 and 6-5 in both George Chaump's last year (1989) and Donnan's first year (1990).
Bill James, Men’s Basketball and Football, 1971-73
James played for the 1971-72 NCAA Tournament basketball team as well as the NIT team of 1972-73. James averaged 8.8 points per game in 1971-72, fifth on a 23-4 Herd team that was ranked as high as eighth nationally and finished No. 12 in the final AP and UPI polls. James played in all 27 games that year, hitting 43 percent of his shots, 73 percent at the line and averaged 3.2 rebounds per game. In 1972-73, he was the team’s second-leading scorer with an average of 15.2 points per game. The Herd was 20-7 under first-year head coach Bob Daniels, winning its final nine games of the regular season. With eligibility remaining, he joined the Marshall football team as a receiver in 1973 and caught nine passes for 78 yards, good for fifth-most that season. For his efforts as an outstanding high school basketball student-athlete in his home state of Indiana, he was named to the state’s Basketball Hall of Fame Silver Anniversary team in 1994.
Katie Stein Mason, Volleyball, 2002-05
Stein helped lead the Herd to a C-USA regular season and tournament title in 2005, Marshall’s first title in the new league, en route to a 15-1 mark in league play. That season, Marshall also advanced to just the second NCAA Tournament in school history. In four seasons, she helped the Herd to 89 wins, including 26 in 2005. Stein was the first recruit landed by head coach Mitch Jacobs when he took over the program in 2002, and called Stein, "the most important recruit of his career" at that time. Marshall's 20 wins in 2002 was the first time since 1998, and Marshall won the "Golden Ball" from WVU for the first time - a traveling trophy that has never left Huntington. Marshall was the runner-up in the Mid-American Conference tournament in both 2003 and 2004. Stein was an Honorable Mention All-American in 2005 on the AVCA Coaches team, the first setter so honored at Marshall. She was also AVCA All-Mid-East Region and first team All-C-USA and was on the All-MAC Freshman team in 2002. Stein is the all-time assists leader at Marshall with 5,888 and is second in aces with 200.
Amanda Williams Paz, Softball, 2003-06
Williams ended her stellar college career as the school's career leader in hits (265), runs scored (184), doubles (68), RBI (142), total bases (408) and walks (93). She is second in stolen bases (88), batting average (.370) and on-base percentage (.447) and finished her career third in home runs (20). A seven-time conference player of the week, she still owns the program’s single-game record with two triples. She led the Herd with a program-best .421 batting average in 2003, and had 75 hits (2003), 24 doubles (2006), five triples (2004) and 51 runs scored (2004), all MU single-season bests. She was a four-time, first-team all-conference selection, including being selected three times first-team All-MAC in 2003-04-05 and All-Conference USA in 2006. She was also named to the MAC’s All-Tournament team in 2005 and was a three-time first-team All-Midwest Region honoree in 2003-04-05, picking up a second-team All-Midwest Region nod in 2006. She was named the MAC Freshman of the Year (2003) and The Parthenon’s Female Athlete of the Year in 2003. Amanda won a spot on the C-USA Commissioner’s Honor Roll in 2006, and was named a NFCA (National Fastpitch Coaches Association) All-American Scholar Athlete in 2002-03 and 2005-06. She helped lead Marshall to win the Mid-American Conference regular season championship in 2003 and 2005 with a program-best conference record of 20-4 both seasons. She was drafted by the Chicago Bandits of the National Pro Fast Pitch (NPF) league and played her rookie year in 2006, winning a regular-season title with the Bandits. Williams then played for the Rockford Thunder from 2007-09, helping lead them to the NPF title in 2009, while earning all-star honors. She played for the Tennessee Diamonds in 2010 and went back to Chicago for two seasons, winning a title in 2011. Williams was an assistant coach for Shonda Stanton through 2013’s Conference USA Championship season and the program’s first appearance in the NCAA Tournament.
Keith Veney, Men’s Basketball, 1995-1997
The NCAA’s record-holder for single-game 3-point field goals (15), Veney’s 51-point outburst in that game versus Morehead State (12/14/96) is also the program’s second-highest single-game scoring mark. He is also second all-time in 3-point percentage, shooting 42.7 percent for his career. He led Billy Donovan’s 1995-96 team in scoring with 19.6 points per game and 111 3-pointers on its way to first place in the Southern Conference’s North Division. That year, Veney also led the Herd in field goals (169), 3-point percentage (.455), free throws (101) and free throw percentage (.754), all of which helped him earn second-team All-SoCon honors. In 1996-97, he hit a program-record 130 3-pointers and helped lead Coach Greg White’s team within one point of the SoCon championship with a 20-9 mark, while capturing another North Division title in the process. Veney played professional basketball overseas for five years after his Marshall career with stops in France, Israel, Iceland, Poland and the Dominican Republic.
David Wade, Men’s Basketball, 1980-84
Wade was captain of the 1983-84 Southern Conference Tournament Champions, which advanced Marshall to its first NCAA Tournament berth in 12 years. He played in 111 career games, scoring 1,137 points. He was on the All-Southern Conference Freshman team in 1980-81, was named honorable mention All-SoCon as a sophomore and, in his senior season, was named both second team all-conference and to the all-tournament team. That season, Wade led the team with 4.6 rebounds and 2.0 steals per game and was the team’s third-leading scorer (10.1 points per game), with his season-high of 26 points coming in the SoCon Championship. Wade helped the Herd to win three-straight Marshall Memorial Invitationals, being co-MVP in 1981. Wade finished his career with a program-best 186 steals and was 11th in rebounds with 651. His 57 steals in 1981-82 is still sixth best in Marshall history and his eight steals in a 68-67 win over Marquette is tied for second all-time in the single-game records. He also led the team in 1981-82 in rebounding (6.9 per game), free throws made (78) and free throw percentage (.672).
Rusty Wamsley, Baseball, 1961-63
Starting at both shortstop and second base, Wamsley has the program’s best single-season batting average at .471 in 1963, and slugged .835, which stood as a program record until 1998. He .386 career batting average is second and he is still sixth at Marshall with seven career triples. He led Marshall in games played each season, at-bats in 1961 (71) and 1962 (58); hits in 1962 (23) and 1963 (40); runs scored in 1963 (22); doubles in 1963 (16 in that season, the record until 1985) and is seventh all-time. He led Marshall in runs scored in 1963 (22), runs battered in (71) and three home runs. Wamsley was second team All-Mid-American Conference in 1962, first-team in 1963.