By: Jim Seavey, CoSIDA Academic All-America® Committee
Duke University men’s basketball star and former NBA standout Shane Battier joins Florida’s Heisman Trophy winning quarterback Danny Wuerffel, United States Olympic women’s hockey medalist Angela Ruggiero of Harvard, Denison football hall of famer and Ohio State team physician Dr. Grant Jones and longtime United States Congressman and DePauw men’s basketball standout Rep. Lee Hamilton (D-Indiana) as this year’s 2015 inductees into the Capital One Academic All-America® Hall of Fame, as selected by CoSIDA.
The five new inductees join 132 members of the Capital One Academic All-America® Hall of Fame, which was created in 1988. They will be inducted into the Academic All-America® Hall of Fame at CoSIDA’s annual convention in Orlando, Fla. on Monday, June 15th at the organization’s sixth annual Capital One Hall of Fame Ceremony at the World Center Marriott. The CoSIDA Convention is part of the annual National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics (NACDA) and Affiliates Convention for a third straight year.
The June 15th Capital One induction ceremony will feature ESPN’s Rece Davis as emcee and legendary broadcaster Dick Enberg, the ambassador of the Academic All-America program, as special guest. At that time, the 2015 Dick Enberg Award recipient, Andre Agassi, also will be recognized.
This marks the fifth year that Capital One is the title sponsor of both the Academic All-America® program and the Academic All-America® Hall of Fame.
The biographical information on this year’s Academic All-America® Hall of Fame induction class is listed below:
SHANE BATTIER – BASKETBALL
A champion at every level that he competed at, Shane Battier ranks among the greats at Duke University both on and off the court. As a senior in 2000-01, Battier led the Blue Devils to their third national championship under the winningest Division I men’s coach in history, 2013 Dick Enberg Award recipient and Naismith Hall of Famer Mike Krzyzewski. He swept all the major national player of the year honors along the way, including the Naismith Award and the John R. Wooden Award, named for the great UCLA coach and fellow Academic All-America Hall of Famer.
A two-time first team GTE Academic All-America® and the Academic All-America® of the Year in 2001, Battier led Duke to an 82-72 victory over Arizona in the 2001 NCAA national championship game played in Minneapolis. That triumph capped a 35-win season and marked the Blue Devils’ second appearance in the title game during his career. Battier was a three-time National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) Defensive Player of the Year, and he combined with teammate Jason Williams as one of only two duos in Blue Devil history to score over 700 points in a season.
Battier was selected as the sixth overall pick in the 2001 National Basketball Association draft by the Memphis Grizzlies. He spent the first five years of his career in Memphis before moving to the Houston Rockets in 2006. Battier returned to the Grizzlies in 2011 before heading to Miami later that year to help the Heat win back-to-back NBA titles in 2012 and 2013.
A native of Birmingham, Mich. and a former Michigan “Mr. Basketball” out of Detroit Country Day School, Battier earned a degree in religion from Duke in 2001.
He embarked on a career as a commentator and studio host at ESPN after his retirement from the Heat following the 2014 NBA Finals.
DANNY WUERFFEL – FOOTBALL
UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA
Danny Wuerffel reached the summit of success both on the field and in the classroom during one of the most highly decorated collegiate football careers in history at the University of Florida. Wuerffel guided the Gators to the 1996 national championship with a 52-20 victory over rival Florida State in the Sugar Bowl just weeks after joining his coach, Steve Spurrier, as the school’s recipient of the Heisman Trophy.
A two-time first team GTE Academic All-America® during his junior and senior campaigns of 1995 and 1996, Wuerffel guided Florida to four straight Southeastern Conference crowns and back-to-back appearances in the national championship game. A two-time All-America honoree, Wuerffel also was a two-time recipient of the Davey O’Brien Award and received both the Sammy Baugh Trophy and the Johnny Unitas Golden Award Award. Wuerffel threw for nearly 11,000 career yards. This included 3,625 yards and 39 touchdowns as a senior during a season which featured a 462-yard effort against Arkansas during the Gators’ run to the national championship. He was elected to the College Football Hall of Fame in 2013.
Selected in the fourth round of the 1997 NFL draft, Danny played three seasons for the New Orleans Saints and a single year each for the Green Bay Packers, Chicago Bears and Washington Redskins. He was the most valuable player of World Bowl 2000 while playing for the Rhein Fire in NFL Europe.
Wuerffel earned a degree in public relations from Florida and was inducted into the school’s Athletic Hall of Fame in 2006. An active member of his New Orleans community, Wuerffel serves as director of Desire Street Ministries, whose goal is to transform impoverished neighborhoods into flourishing, healthy communities across the nation. Undaunted after Hurricane Katrina destroyed his home and Desire Street’s facilities, Danny drew national attention to his efforts to rebuild the Ministries and to assist in rebuilding the city of New Orleans and the region as well.
ANGELA RUGGIERO – HOCKEY
Angela Ruggiero shined brightly on both the national and international stages as a standout defenseman for Harvard University and as a four-time Olympic medalist for Team USA. Ruggiero helped lead the USA to the inaugural Olympic gold medal in 1998 and was a member of three other medal-winning squads that captured silver in 2002 and 2010 as well as bronze in 2006.
Ruggiero earned first team Verizon Academic All-America® at-large accolades during her senior season for the Crimson, the same year that she received the Patty Kazmaier Memorial Trophy as the nation’s top female hockey player. A three-time team MVP for Harvard, she was a four-time All-America selection and was named as a recipient of the NCAA’s distinguished Top VIII Award for her success in competition, in the classroom and in the community.
Ruggiero received international recognition in 2003 after being named as the United States Olympic Committee Player of the Year and voted as the best female player in the world by The Hockey News. Angela garnered top defenseman honors at both the 2002 (Salt Lake City) and 2006 (Turin, Italy) Olympic Games and was also named as the top defenseman on four occasions (2001, 2004, 2005 and 2008) at the World Championships. She was the first woman non-goalie to play professional men’s hockey in North America, playing for the Tulsa Oilers alongside her brother, Bill, while also earning a place in the Hockey Hall of Fame as the first brother-sister duo to play pro hockey together.
In 2010, Ruggiero was elected to an eight-year term on the International Olympic Committee. She also serves on the IOC’s Athlete’s Commission, Entourage Commission and 2018 Evaluation Commission. A member of the Board of Directors of both the United States Olympic Committee and the World Anti-Doping Agency, Ruggiero also has been a trustee of the Women’s Sports Foundation since 2008.
DR. GRANT JONES – FOOTBALL
Dr. Grant Jones has built a legacy of service and excellence in the state of Ohio both on and off the gridiron after enjoying a career as one of the most decorated student-athletes in the history of Denison University. A two-time all-North Coast Athletic Conference honoree and team MVP as a defensive back for the Big Red, Dr. Jones was named as the GTE College Division Academic All-America® of the Year in 1987. During that same senior season of 1987-88, he was named as both the Woody Hayes National and Columbus Touchdown Club’s Scholar-Athlete of the Year while earning an NCAA Postgraduate Scholarship.
Five years after earning his medical doctorate from Ohio State in 1992, Dr. Jones joined OSU Sports Medicine as an orthopaedic surgeon. He serves as the head team physician for the Buckeyes’ men’s basketball team and as the orthopaedic consultant for Ohio State’s women’s basketball, wrestling, gymnastics, golf, fencing, cheerleading and baseball teams. In 2009, Grant became head team physician for the Columbus Clippers, the Triple A affiliate of the Cleveland Indians. In 2011 he was named a team physician for USA Lacrosse, working with both the men’s and women’s national teams.
A staple of the Columbus community, Dr. Jones has taken part in the Childhood League/Merry-Go-Round fundraiser for Columbus Children’s Hospital’s Childhood League Center for the past decade, as the event raises up to $400,000 annually. He has also takes part in the Night of Hope for the Columbus Child Advocacy Center for Abused Children while also volunteering for Pelotonia, an annual Ohio bicycle race to end cancer. Dr. Jones has also been a Special Olympics volunteer for the past 17 years and has worked with Life Time Sports, a sports camp for underprivileged children, since 2008. He also spent five weeks in South America giving medical lectures and visiting hospitals and clinics as part of the American Orthopaedic Society of Sports Medicine’s Traveling Fellowship Program.
REPRESENTATIVE LEE HAMILTON – BASKETBALL
A dedicated public servant, Congressman Lee Hamilton‘s legacy of service to his country and to the people of the state of Indiana has been unrivaled for more than a half century.
A basketball standout in the early 1950’s at DePauw University, an institution that has produced so many hoop luminaries that include Boston Celtics Head Coach Brad Stevens, Congressman Hamilton averaged nearly 11 points per game over the course of three seasons for the Tigers, including a double-double effort of 10.9 points and a team-best 10.7 rebounds during his senior campaign of 1951-52. He earned a degree in history from DePauw in 1952 and graduated with high distinction (the equivalent of cum laude) while earning the Walker Cup as a member of the senior class determined to have done the most for the school during his or her college career. Elected to the Indiana Basketball Hall of Fame in 1982, Congressman Hamilton was enshrined in his alma mater’s Athletic Hall of Fame five years later.
Hamilton was elected to the United States House of Representatives in January 1965 and served Indiana’s 9th District with great distinction for the next 34 years. He served as chairman of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, the Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence and the Select Committee to Investigate Covert Arms Transactions with Iran. Hamilton also served as chairman of the Joint Committee on the Organization of Congress and worked to promote integrity and efficiency in the institution.
After his retirement from the House of Representatives, Hamilton served for 11 years as President of the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars located in Washington, D.C. He served as vice chairman of the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks (also known as the 9/11 Commission) and also served as co-chairman of the Iraq Study Group with former Secretary of State James Baker.
Congressman Hamilton currently serves as Director of the Center on Congress at Indiana University. He is a member of the President’s Homeland Security Advisory Council, the CIA External Board and the United States Department of Homeland Security Task Force on Preventing the Entry of Weapons of Mass Effect on American Soil.
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