Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Boomer's Wall of Fame Wednesday

It was time for a change. Starting today "What If" Wednesday's will now be replaced with Boomer's Wall of Fame Wednesday. Now, this does not mean "What If" is officially retired from "The Rock", it just means it will be taking a break for a time period, while I try out a new topic to talk about and discuss with all you bottom dwellers. :) Basically, what the Wall of Fame will be about, each week Boomer will provided you with one athlete/player and one Head Coach, and enshrine them into the Boomer Wall of Fame. The player/coach will either be already in their professional Hall of Fame or waiting their turn to get the call. With that, the player/coach could also be from the College ranks, and never got the chance to play/coach professionally and/or didn't have quiet the professional career, like they did in College. So, let me know what you think, and I am always down for any suggestions, but do know Boomer will have the final say in the decision of who gets inducted into "Boomer's Wall of Fame.

And the first player to be enshrined into Boomer's Wall of Fame....Boomer's childhood favorite player...Ken Griffey, Jr.

               Ken Griffey, Jr.
Who could forget that pure left-handed swing Griffey Jr. had. My love for Griffey, Jr. started at a young age. Baseball was the first sport I took an interested in and I don't exactly remember the exact time, but I fell in love with arguably one of the best of all time to play the game of baseball. From having my own Seattle Mariners ball cap (that I use to wear backwards all the time, like Jr.), to ordering my own pair of Griffey, Jr. cleats, to the #24 Mariners tee-shirt, Griffey, Jr. trashcan (which I still have), the Wheatles boxes, etc. I had it all. The disappointment of the 1994 MLB strike-shorten season, in which this young boy had tickets to go see the Mariners up in Cleveland, the following week. To the enjoyment, a few years later, finally seeing Griffey, Jr. in person (up in Cleveland) hit his 300th career home run. Watching him hit his 500th HR on Father's Day of 2004, and the bear hug he gave his dad after rounding the bases. What can I say, it was love at first site. Griffey would end up winning multiple awards for his batting as well as, his glove out in Center Field. Griffey, Jr. played for the Seattle Mariners, Cincinnati Reds, and Chicago White Sox. He is one of only EIGHT guys to have over 600 career HR's (630). Due to injuries, during his baseball career, Griffey had a couple season-shorten ones and, who knows how many more home run's he could have collected, most people believe it would be Griffey, Jr. at the top of the all-time list, instead of Barry Bonds, if he would have stayed healthy. Regardless, to this day and forever Ken Griffey, Jr. will ALWAYS be my favorite player of all-time, PERIOD! With, that its an honor of mine to induct Ken Griffey, Jr. as the first player into Boomer's Wall of Fame.

One of my favorite moments from Griffey, Jr. He was a kid in an adults body.

And the first coach to be inducted....Jimmy V.....Jim Valvano

                     Jim Valvano "Jimmy V"
Jimmy V's a shoe-in regardless of his coaching career, but with his 1993 ESPY Speech. Although, I am too young, heck I wasn't even born yet, I could watch the final :06 and beyond of the 1983 NCAA Men's Basketball Championship over and over again. Coach Valvano's underdog WolfPack team from NC State, shocked the basketball world with a last second dunk by NC State forward Lorenzo Charles, to beat the heavily-favored Houston "Phi Slamma Jama" Cougars, 54-52. Coach Valvano's reaction afterwards was amazing, running around the court, with a, "someone give me a hug" look on his face. Coach Valvano's career record at NC State was 209-114, guiding the WolfPack to three Elite Eight appearances and the one title in 1983. Coach Valvano before his days at NC State, Coach Valvano made stops at John Hopkins (10-9), Bucknell (33-42) and Iona (94-45). Overall, Coach Valvano collected 346 W's in his coaching career. Coach V passed away in April of 1993 due to a year-long battle with cancer. Each year the CBB universe has what they call, "Jimmy V Week", were all the proceeds go towards the Jimmy V Foundation for cancer research. It is by greatest honors to induct Coach Jim Valvano into Boomer's Wall of Fame, theres not another coach I would have put in first besides Jimmy V. 

Will someone give this guy a hug!