Hall Of A Good Time
Feb. 7, 2005
LAS VEGAS - One of the top classes in history entered the UNLV Athletic Hall of Fame Friday during spirited ceremonies before an appreciative crowd at the MGM Grand Hotel.
Golfer Warren Schutte (1989-93), Runnin' Rebel basketball player Freddie Banks (1983-87), football wide receiver Keenan McCardell (1987-90) and longtime Hustlin' Rebel head baseball coach Fred Dallimore (1973-96) brought the hall's total inductees to 80, which includes 10 teams.
During his remarks, UNLV Director of Athletics Mike Hamrick described to the crowd the prestige of this year's group.
"We're proud of you all and this is a highlight and privilege for me to come and pay tribute to some of the best Rebels ever," Hamrick said. "I watched the Runnin' Rebels from across the country and remember that when the game was on the line, who was going to take that last shot? Freddie Banks! That is a sure sign of character.
"Next to him is an NCAA Champion golfer. Do you know how difficult it is to become an individual golf champion?
"Over there is probably the greatest wide receiver to play football at UNLV and now has 13 years in the NFL.
"And there is a coach who had almost 800 wins. In my mind, he is the father of UNLV baseball.
"I want you all to know how proud I am, how proud your president and your university are of all of you for your athletic accomplishments and the quality of people you have become."
Schutte, who is still playing professionally, reflected on how Rebel golf is a favorite program in Las Vegas under head coach Dwaine Knight.
"This truly is an honor and I am proud to be a part of this," Schutte said. "UNLV and coach Knight and my teammates remain very much a part of me and my family. The support the golf program received while I was here was unbelievable and I would like to thank everyone involved."
Banks, perhaps the most highly recruited basketball prep player to ever come out of Nevada, continues to be regarded as the best three-point shooter in school history.
"This was a long time coming," said the man who would earn the nickname "Fearless" Freddie. "It really is an honor. I feel really blessed to be a hometown kid that got to play for coach Tarkanian and win so many games here. For those of you who watched me during my fours at UNLV, just remember, Freddie Banks is still behind that three-point line."
After playing at UNLV under head coach Wayne Nunnely, McCardell has forged a pro career that ranks him 15th all-time in receptions and remains the only Rebel to ever score in a Super Bowl.
"Thanks to coach Nunnely for giving me the opportunity to play football. Without this school, I wouldn't be where I am at. Now while I play in the NFL, I have a chip on my shoulder for UNLV because I don't think people realize the great people here and the great football here. Thank you to everyone."
The evening closed with the popular Dallimore taking the stage en route to becoming only the sixth UNLV head coach enshrined.
"I would like to give a heartfelt thanks to the Hall of Fame board for accepting my accomplishments as a coach here for induction into this prestigious hall," Dallimore said. "I am honored and I am humbled for this personal recognition. I would also like to congratulate my fellow honorees. Their outstanding performance while at UNLV and in professional sports have brought great recognition to our fine institution of UNLV. For me, coaching baseball was a love affair that lasted 28 years and I thank you."
The next hall of fame class will be enshrined in two years.