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Pitt Unveils 2022 Hall of Fame Class

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Pitt Hall of Fame

Pitt Athletics unveiled their 2022 Hall of Fame Class on Thursday. The class includes 12 athletes from nine different programs at and is the fourth edition since the inaugural class in 2018.

The class includes three programs with two inductees, with Russ Grimm and Rickey Jackson from football, Jerome Lane and Larry Harris from men’s basketball and Rande Stottlemyer and Pat Santoro from wrestling. It also includes Keisha Demas and Jerry Richey of women’s and men’s track and field, respectively, Debbie Lewis of women’s basketball, Angela Lopez Callahan of women’s swimming, Ann Marie Lucanie of volleyball and Donnie DeMarino Sanft of gymnastics.

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Pittsburgh Wrestling Club

Pitt will induct the 2022 class at Acrisure Stadium on Friday, Sept. 30 at a reception and dinner. Individual tickets for the event are $150 and a table is $1,250. The next day on Saturday, Oct. 1, Pitt will honor the inductees during the football game against Georgia Tech.

Grimm and Jackson both joined Pitt as a part of the incredible 1977 recruiting class. Grimm starred as the staring center on the Panthers offensive line and Jackson became one of the most feared defensive ends in college football. Jackson finished with 290 tackles and a team-high 137 tackles as a senior. In their junior and senior seasons, they led the Panthers to a 22-2 record and two top-10 finishes in the polls.

Lane is most known for his iconic backboard breaking dunk at the Fitzgerald Field House against Providence in 1988. Still, Lane played incredible defense as a power forward. He led the NCAA in rebounding as a sophomore with 13.5 rebounds per game and led the Big East in the category in back-to-back seasons from 1986-88. The two-time All-American also served as Pitt’s second leading scorer and worked with Pitt all-time great Charles Smith to win consecutive Big East titles in 1987 and 1988.

Harris is one of Pitt’s greatest ever scorers. He finished his career in 1978 as the all-time leading scorer in Pitt history with 1,914 points, which is still third highest today. The forward is one of just three Pitt players, Don Hennon and Billy Knight, to average 20 or more points in three different seasons. The two-time All-Eastern 8 selection led the league with 22.9 points per game in 1977 and finished with 14 games of 30 or more points, which is even more impressive considering the 3-point line did not exist at the time.

Stottlemyer is the only posthumous induction on the list, but one of high significance when it comes to wrestling at Pitt. He wrestled from 1974-78, compiled a record of 68-16-2 and earned the 1976 Eastern Wrestling title (EWL) at 134 pounds. He then worked as an assistant for one season, before serving as head coach for 34 seasons from 1979-2013. He helped coach Pitt wrestlers to 56 EWL individual champions, 33 All-Americans and three national champions. His final years saw some of his greatest success as head coach, winning three consecutive EWL regular season championships from 2010-12, three consecutive EWL Tournament Titles, 2011-13, and helping Pitt to place 15th in the NCAA in his final two seasons.

Santoro is one of those national champions that Stottlemyer coached in his time at Pitt. Santoro wrestled from 1986-89, earning All-American status each year, the only Pitt wrestler to achieve that feat. Wrestling at 142 pounds, he won the NCAA title in 1988 and 1989, winning 20 total NCAA Championship matches. He finished his career and is still to this day the winningest wrestler in Pitt history, with a 167-13 record. He won all 48 matches his junior year on his way to his first NCAA title. Santoro originally earned induction into the Pitt Hall of Fame for the 2020 class, but since he could not make it to the 2021 ceremony, Pitt will induct him in this class.

Demas is one of the best 400 meters runners in Panthers history, holding the program record for the outdoor 400 meters at 52.27 seconds. She finished as a five-time All-American and 14-time Big East champion. She worked great in the 4×400 meters relays as well, helping the outdoor 4×400 meters team to earn All-American status in 1990 and 1991. She is a part of the indoor sprint medley relay team that holds the program record at 3:59.46 set in 1991.  Individually, she earned All-American honors for the outdoor 400 meters in 1990 and 1991 and the indoor 400 meters in 1990. She also earned the title of “Outstanding Performer” at the 1991 Big East Indoor Championships.

Richey is one of, if not the best distance runner in Pitt history.  He ran from 1967-71, won two NCAA Championships and earned All-American honors five times. Those two national titles came in the 3000 meters in 1970 and as part of the distance medley relay team in 1971. That distance medley relay team ran a world record time of 9:39.7 in 1971. Richey holds the program record for the indoor two-mile event at 8:39.44 in 1970. The event does not take place often anymore, as the 3000 meters and the 5000 meters events take its place. He also ran a sub-four-minute mile at 19 years old, becoming one of only 27 Americans at the time to achieve that feat.

Lewis is one of the best two-way players in Pitt history and one of the early stars in the women’s basketball program from 1977-82. Lewis leads the program with 638 career assists, ranks second with 250 career steals and fourth with 1,941 career points, which all came before the 3-point line. Her 186 career assists as a senior tie her for the most in a season in program history.

Sanft starred as a gymnast from 1970-74 for the Panthers. She served as a three-time captain, earned status as a three-time Most Valuable Performer and also the 1974 Pitt Female Scholar-Athlete of the year. She became the first head coach of the gymnastics program at age 22 when it started as an intercollegiate sport at Pitt. She served as head coach from 1974-86, compiling an 86-57-1 record. She earned Eastern Collegiate Coach of the Year honors twice, earned a top 10 ranking once in 1979 and top 20 ranking four times, 1981-82, 1984 and 1986. She also coached the only Pitt gymnast National Champion in Lisa Shirk in 1982. After coaching, she worked as an administrator in Pitt athletics from 1986-2014.

Callahan is the first women in Pitt swimming and diving history to earn All-American status, doing so in the 200-yard breaststroke in 1974 and again in 1975 in the 100-yard breaststroke.

Lucanie ranks in the top 10 in many categories in Pitt volleyball history, including kills, attacks, hitting percentage, service aces and digs. She earned Big East Player of the Year three consecutive times from 1991-93 and is a four-time Big East Tournament MVP from 1990-93. She led Pitt to four Big East regular season championships, four Big East Tournament titles and four NCAA Tournament appearances in her collegiate career.

 

Sandy Schall, Coldwell Banker
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Pittband
Pittband
1 month ago

Larry Harris was the most talented mbb player I watched at Pitt. He unfortunately could not bring himself to play defense with the same intensity. Billy Knight did everything except sell peanuts.

Dukes

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