Four South Bay sports icons who made their mark in professional, college, and Olympic sports make up the 2009 Class of Inductees of the San Jose Sports Hall of Fame.
The fifteenth class, which will be inducted at the November 11 ceremony at HP Pavilion at San Jose, includes:
- Ron Calcagno: accomplished Santa Clara University athlete and legendary St. Francis High School football coach
- Sheryl Johnson: Three-time Olympian and respected Stanford University coach
- Ronnie Lott: NFL Hall of Famer, 49er football legend and community philanthropist
- Bob Murphy: Standout Stanford pitcher and renowned Stanford broadcaster
The November 11th event, presented by Hewlett-Packard, celebrates 15 years of the San Jose Sports Hall of Fame. The event begins with a reception followed by dinner and induction ceremony. Dinner tickets begin at $200 each and sponsorship packages are available ranging from $2,500 to $15,000. For information and to purchase tickets (408) 288-2936.
The 2009 Class brings the total number to 71 of South Bay sports figures in the Hall of Fame, which recognizes each honoree with a bronze plaque permanently installed on the concourse at HP Pavilion. The annual induction is an event of the San Jose Sports Authority, San Jose Arena Authority, HP Pavilion Management/San Jose Sharks and the City of San José. The event benefits Special Olympics Northern California and high school sports programs.
About the San Jose Sports Authority
The San Jose Sports Authority is a non-profit organization whose mission is to increase the City of San Jose's economic development, visibility and civic pride through sports. Serving as the City's sports commission since its inception in 1991, the Sports Authority has provided leadership and support to attract or host hundreds of sporting events in San Jose and the South Bay. The Sports Authority also supports and operates community, youth and amateur sports programs, including the San Jose Sports Hall of Fame, The First Tee of San Jose, and the REACH Youth Scholarship Program. To learn more, visit www.sjsa.org.
A graduate of St. Ignatius High School in San Francisco, Ron Calcagno was a standout multi-sport high school athlete with honors that included: a football All-America team selection, North-South Shrine Game team member, MVP of the East-West game, All-Northern California in football and basketball, San Francisco basketball player of the year, TOC All Tournament, All-League in football, basketball and baseball, and San Francisco All-Sports Player of the year.
Calcagno went on to become a record-setting quarterback at Santa Clara University and a 1963 Little-All-America selection. He also played baseball for the Broncos for three years. Following Santa Clara, Ron was signed by Al Davis and played professional football for a year in the Continental League, followed by a year in the Canadian Football League.
Calcagno was head football coach at St. Francis High School from 1972 until 1995, compiling a record of 233-59-3, until he retired to take a front office job with the Oakland A's. His Lancer teams won 12 West Catholic Athletic league championships and 11 Central Coast Section titles, his teams played in 21 CCS years, 16 times in title games, CCS record 53 wins, 10 losses, 15 shutouts, and 15 consecutive wins twice (1982-85, and 1991- 95). Only two of his 24 teams finished lower than second in the always competitive WCAL. The St. Francis High School football stadium is named in his honor. He is a member of Santa Clara University, St. Francis High and San Francisco Prep halls of fame.
A Monta Vista High School graduate who attended De Anza College and the University of California at Berkeley, Sheryl Johnson was a member of the USA national team from 1978-91, representing her country a record 137 times. Johnson won a bronze medal at the 1984 Olympics and a silver medal at the 1987 Pan American Games.
She was voted USA Field Hockey Player of the Year in 1986, 1987 and 1989 and was inducted into the U. S. Field Hockey Association Hall of Fame in 1994. She also is in the Halls of Fame at Monta Vista High, De Anza (the first woman ever inducted) and at Cal, where she also lettered in softball and basketball -- the only woman in Cal's history to letter in three sports.
She was Stanford University's field hockey coach from 1984 to 2002, compiling a 168-125-11 record with nine Nor Pac Conference titles and seven NCAA appearances.
An NFL Hall of Famer, he embodied the heart and soul of a champion on the football field and exemplifies true philanthropy off the field.
An All-American at the University of Southern California, Lott was a first round selection of the San Francisco 49ers in the 1981 NFL draft. In his rookie year, he helped to lead the 49ers to a Super Bowl victory. His legendary career included a total of four Super Bowl titles, 10 Pro Bowl appearances, 63 career interceptions, and was capped off by an induction into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2000.
Since retiring from professional football, Lott continues to stay involved in his sport through his weekly show on KNBR as a studio analyst.
For nearly 20 years, Lott has given back to the community through his non-profit organization, All Stars Helping Kids, which supports disadvantaged youth in the bay area and throughout the nation. His passion for the South Bay community has been unwavering and shares that sentiment in his own words, "Sports are never forever, but serving others is."
Murphy is a graduate of Burlingame High School. He went on to Stanford where he won 11 games as a pitcher on the 1953 Cardinal baseball team, which set a school record with 29 wins on the way to its first appearance in the NCAA College World Series. After graduation, he pitched for three seasons for the Oakland Oaks in the Pacific Coast League.
He was sports information director at Stanford from 1964 to 1973. He went on to serve as San Jose State University's Athletic Director from 1976 to 1979.
Murphy may be best known to Bay Area sports fans as the radio voice for Cardinal football and basketball for more than 43 years. During the more than four decades at the microphone, he handled play-by-play and analyst duties.
Murphy retired at the end of the 2007 football season and is a member of the Stanford Hall of Fame.