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UC Athletics Inducts 2013 Hall of Fame Class
CINCINNATI (WKRC) -- Four standout former University of Cincinnati student-athletes were inducted into the James P. Kelly Sr. Athletics Hall of Fame on Tuesday during the Legion of Excellence dinner at the Kingsgate Marriott. The group comprised of volleyball player Julie Dupont-Fitzgerald, football's Gino Guidugli, men's basketball's Kenyon Martin and cross country and track and field's Ron Stapleton.
Fitzgerald played at UC from 2001 to 2004, is the Bearcats' career leader in kills with 2,137 and was a member of the Conference USA All-Decade Team. She was the C-USA Player of the Year as both a junior and senior and was the first UC volleyball player to receive All-American recognition when she was a third-team selection as a junior and honorable mention as a senior.
Guidugli started his UC career replacing an injured starter in the second game of his true freshman season and never looked back, starting 46 games and passing for 11,453 yards, doubling his closest pursuer in the record books. The charter member of UC's football ring of honor still holds six school records and had a successful Arena Football League career before starting his current job as the running backs coach and recruiting coordinator at Central Michigan University.
"My success was the result of hard work and this honor is a tribute to all the guys I played with," Guidugli said. "Football is truly a sport where you are only as good as the guys next to you. I played with some great guys who didn't get the recognition, but I feel this award goes to each and every one of them because they worked just as hard as I did."
Martin, one of the top players in UC history, is one of three UC basketball players to have his jersey retired along with Oscar Robertson and Jack Twyman, both members of the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. Martin played center for the Bearcats from 1996 to 2000 and was a three-year starter. As a senior in 1999-00, he averaged 18.9 points, 9.7 rebounds and 3.5 blocked shots and was a consensus first-team All-American and National Player of the Year on a Bearcats squad which held the No. 1 ranking in the country for 12 weeks. He was the first selection in the 2000 NBA draft, has played 13 seasons in the NBA and is currently with the New York Knicks.
"For me to come from where I was my freshman year to being able to develop my game into becoming the No. 1 pick in the NBA is a great honor to the work Coach (Bob) Huggins put into me and the time that he stayed on me academically and athletically," Martin said. "I didn't have a father figure so without him none of this would be possible.
"Things (with the university) over the years have been a little rocky," Martin said. "I made some statements a few years ago that I couldn't take back, but at the time that's how I felt. But I'm still a Bearcat at heart. Thanks for this honor and this is not the last you will see of me."
Stapleton was a standout in cross country and track and field from 1970 to 1974. He was UC's first All-American in either sport in 1974 and remains one of two cross country runners in school history to earn All-America honors.
In addition to honoring this year's hall of fame class, the Legion of Excellence selected two new members into the Order of the Black Blazer, present the Strubbe Distinguished Service Award and celebrate the academic achievements of the 2013 scholar-athletes of each sport.
HALL OF FAME ENSHRINEE BIOS
Julie DuPont-Fitzgerald- Volleyball (Lettered: 2001-04)
Earned a BS (communication sciences and disorders) and a certificate in deaf studies in 4 years at UC ... second-team all-C-USA as sophomore ... C-USA Player of the Year as a junior and senior ... first UC volleyball player to be named all-American earning third team as a junior and honorable mention as a senior ... team posted a record of 95-34 and went to three NCAA Tournaments during her four years ... teams shared or won two C-USA titles ... three-time CoSIDA Academic All-American including first-team choice in 2004 ... member of the Conference USA All-Decade Team.
Gino Gudugli - Football (Lettered: 2001-04)
A Second-Team all-Conference USA selection in 2002 ... was the league's Freshman of the Year in 2001 ... named C-USA Player of the Week three times ... won the Claude Rost Award (Team MVP) twice (2001 & 2004), one of four players in school history to achieve that milestone ... a charter member of the Bearcats Ring of Honor at Nippert Stadium ... still holds the school career records for total yards (11,661), passing attempts (1,556), completions (880), passing yards (11,453), touchdown passes (78), and TD to interception ratio ( 30) ... set three single-season school records in 2002, breaking the marks for passing attempts (472), completions (258), and passing yards (3,543) ... only QB in UC history to throw for more than 3,500 yards in a season.
Kenyon Martin - Men's Basketball (Lettered: 1997-2000)
A consensus first team All-American and college basketball's player of the year as a senior ... starter for his final three seasons ... career averages: 11.0 points, 7.5 rebounds...averaged 18.9 points, 9.7 rebounds and 3.5 blocks as a senior ... holds UC records for career blocks (292).
Ron Stapleton - Men's Cross Country/Track & Field (Lettered: 1970-74)
Earned bachelor's in business in 1973 and an MBA in 1974 ... school's first all-American in cross country or track, being named an all-American in cross country ... one of two cross country runners in school history to earn all-American honors ... runner-up in the 1971 All-Ohio Cross Country meet ... in 1972 he set the school record in the 5000 meters at the Pittsburgh Relays, a record that stood for 36 years ... qualified for the 1972 USTFF National Championships in the mile where he made the finals and set the school record which stood for 30 years ... also qualified for the NCAA outdoor championships in the mile and the three mile ... qualified for the NCAA 5,000 meters in 1973.
Information from UC Athletics