Inductees for the 2013 class of the Omaha Sports Hall of Fame were announced Thursday, January 31, 2013. “It is an outstanding group of inductees, certainly worthy of this recognition” said Don Leahy, Co-chair of the Omaha Sports Hall of Fame committee. The 2013 inductees are:
Sandy Buda - One of the most successful football coaches in UNO history, Sandy Buda compiled an 84-49 record from 1978-89 which ranks second all-time in wins at UNO. His teams captured North Central Conference titles in 1983 and 1984 and advanced to the NCAA Division II playoffs twice – in 1978 and 1984, when the Mavericks lost in the national semifinal game. The Omaha native is also a member of the UNO and Creighton Prep Halls of Fame.
Dr. Jack Lewis - For more than 50 years, Dr. Lewis has been an influential force on the Omaha sports scene. A avid supporter of many activities and organizations, he is also a member of the Nebraska High School Athletic Hall of Fame having been inducted in 2004.
Jerry Murtaugh – A three sport standout at Omaha North High School in football, wrestling and baseball, Murtaugh went on to play for the University of Nebraska where he was Co-Captain of the National Championship team in 1970. An All-American and all-conference linebacker, Murtaugh set a University of Nebraska record for most career tackles, a record that stood until 2004. After graduation, Murtaugh was signed by the New England Patriots, where he played for two years, until knee injuries ended his playing career.
Wally Provost – A legendary Sports writer and Editor, Provost was considered the dean of sports reporters in the region. He was on staff of the Omaha World-Herald for 34 years, Don Leahy said of him, “He was the sports authority for decades. He set an extremely high standard for all of his successors. He obviously loved his job, and it showed through in everything he did.” Wally Provost passed away in 1996.
Rose Shires – The veteran leader has amassed a 429-267 (.616) coaching record over her stellar career, making her the winningest coach in UNO history. The Mavericks’ 1997 Elite Eight appearance followed a 1996 campaign which saw her lead UNO to its first-ever national championship with a 35-2 record, as well as its first North Central Conference championship since 1987. Over the past two decades Shires has coached nine players to 27 All-America awards, including five from the AVCA First Teams. Thirty-five of her players have combined for 61 all-conference honors in NCC and MIAA play, and 18 have gone on to claim 34 all-region honors.
Connie Yori - A standout basketball player at Creighton University, Yori scored 2,010 points, which ranks third all-time in Bluejays’ women’s basketball history, and she is also near (or at) the top of numerous other school records as well. She is a member of the Creighton Athletic Hall of Fame and currently is the Head Coach of University of Nebraska women’s basketball team. Following the 2009-10 season, Yori was named the Naismith College Coach of the Year and the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association Coach of the Year after guiding Nebraska to a 32–2 record and the school’s first-ever trip to the NCAA Women’s Division I Basketball Championship Sweet 16.
The 1963 Omaha Tech High School basketball team - In a golden age of prep hoops, All-Nebraska players Fred Hare and Joe Williams led coach Neal Mosser’s Trojans to the state title by winning their three tournament games by an average of 21 points. Tech’s 91-73 finals win came over an Omaha Creighton Prep team regarded as that school’s best. Tech’s losses were 72-56 to Prep in the finals of the city’s holiday tournament and 62-61 to Central (14-9) to close the regular season.
The induction ceremony and banquet for the class of 2013 will take place on Thursday, April 25, 2013 at the Scott Conference Center on the campus of the University of Nebraska Omaha. In addition to recognizing the inductees, John Hildenbiddle, Mutual of Omaha Senior Vice-President, will be recognized as the Dr. Jack Lewis Award winner for Distinguished Service to the Omaha Sports Community.
About the Omaha Sports Hall of Fame
The Omaha Sports Hall of Fame was founded in 2006 with the goal of providing a permanent place to honor individuals with strong ties to Omaha and who have achieved tremendous success through athletics. The Omaha Sports Hall of Fame honors athletes and coaches who have highly excelled on their field of play. The Hall welcomes nominations of individuals who are either originally from Omaha or have spent a significant amount of time in the community.