More than 100 family, fans and former Lamar University athletes showed up to the Setzer Center Ballroom Saturday morning for the Cardinals Hall of Honor as LU inducted eight new members. The class – one of the largest in Hall of Honor history – consisted seven former athletes and one coach and it included six decades worth of LU athletics.
“This is a very special day for Lamar University,” said Director of Athletics Marco Born. “It always great to have your former coaches and athletes on campus. We have a great Hall of Honor and today’s class only added to that. This group, along with those that have come before them, have helped set the standard for what future Cardinals strive to achieve.
“To see all the smiles and to hear all of the stories really made this a great day,” added Born.
The class includes Bridge City native Natalie Sarver. It was about a year ago that Sarver’s number was retired by the volleyball team.
The 2019 induction class also includes Alvin Brooks (men’s basketball, 1979-81), Vernon Glass (football coach, 1963-75), Joseph Bowser (football and track & field, 1971-73), Jordan Foster (baseball, 2001-04), Larry Jackson (track & field, 1977-80), James Gulley (men’s basketball, 1984-88) and Kalis Loyd (women’s basketball, 2009-13).
The 2019 class is the largest LU induction since 1997 (when LU also inducted eight). There is only one induction class that was larger than LU’s 2019 class and that came in 1973 – the Hall of Honor’s inaugural class.
2019 Cardinals’ Hall of Honor
Inductee BiosAlvin Brooks (Men’s Basketball, 1979-81)
In just two short seasons with the Cardinals, Brooks became the school’s all-time leader in assists (432) … A pass-first point guard, Brooks set the stage for his teammates to be in the spotlight, playing with six All-Southland selections, including four first-teamers … Brooks 432 assists were so impressive that he still ranks second all-time at LU … As a senior, Brooks set the LU single-season assist record with 249 (8.3 apg) assists … During his two seasons on campus, Brooks guided the Cardinals to a 47-16 (.746) record, two conference titles and a 3-2 (.400) mark in the NCAA tournament … A second-team All-Southland selection as a senior, Brooks averaged better than 10 points per game during his career.
Vernon Glass (Football Coach, 1963-75)
Head coach of the Cardinals for 13 seasons … Became the program’s third head coach (as a four-year institution) … Guided the program through the transition from NCAA independent status into the Southland Conference … Two-time Southland Conference Coach of the Year … The Cardinals won the Southland title in its first three years as part of the league … Glass would go on to win four conference titles during his time at Lamar … Also posted three Southland runner-up finishes … Recorded eight wins in 1972 and 1974 which still stand as the single-season school record for wins in a season (as a four-year institution) … School’s all-time winningest head coach (four-year institution) with 68 career wins … Produced 47 all-conference athletes … He also produced one All-American, one SLC Defensive Player of the Year and the school’s first ever Senior Bowl invitee.
Joseph Bowser (Football and Track & Field, 1971-73)
A member of the Southland Conference Football All-Decade Team (1970s) … Two-time All-Southland Conference selection … A three-year letterwinner in football and track & field … Led the team in receptions and receiving yards in each of his three seasons … Finished his career 93 catches for 1,492 yards and 12 touchdowns … Averaged nearly 16 yards per reception during his career … Still ranks among the school’s all-time top 10 in career receiving yards … A 1973 free agent signee of the Dallas Cowboys … A member the Cardinals’ 1971 SLC Track and Field team.
Jordan Foster (Baseball, 2001-04)
A four-year letterwinner … Member of the Southland Conference’s All-Decade Team (2000s) … A two-time ABCA All-South Central Region selection, who garnered All-America honors in 2003 … That year Foster was named to the Collegiate Baseball, Baseball America, ABCA All-America and NCBWA All-America teams … Two-time All-Southland Conference selection who garnered first-team honors in 2003 … Two-time Southland All-Tournament selection, including tournament MVP honors in 2004 … A two-time Al Vincent Award recipient … Second player in program history to hit .400 in a season (.417 in 2003) … School’s all-time leader with 256 hits and 63 doubles … Second all-time in school history with a .374 career batting average … Tied for fourth all-time at LU with 165 runs batted in … Also holds the school single-season record for hits (96), batting average (.417) and doubles (29) … A 2004 24th-round selection by the Detroit Tigers.
Larry Jackson (Track & Field, 1977-80)
A 1978 Indoor All-America selection … Received multiple All-Southland Conference honors … Named team co-captain in 1980 … Ran the 880-yard leg of the school-record sprint medley relay team at the Baylor Relays … School-record time was ranked among the nation’s top 10 … Guided the Cardinals to three consecutive outdoor conference titles (1978-80), sparking a run of nine consecutive conference championships … The nine-straight league outdoor titles remains the most dominant run by a men’s team in SLC history … Guided the LU 4×400-meter relay team to the Southland Outdoor title in 1978 and 1979 … A former USTFF champion, Jackson helped guide Lamar to the 1978 NCAA Outdoor Championships in the 1,600-meter relay … Qualified for the USTFF Championships in the 880-yard run and as a member of the 4×880-yard relay team.
Natalie Sarver (Volleyball, 1999-2002) Bridge City, Texas
One of the greatest players to ever don the Red and White uniform … Four-year letterwinner … Guided the Cardinals to 93 wins and the 2001 Southland Conference Championship … A four-time All-Southland Conference selection … A former Babe Zaharias Award winner, Sarver was selected as the Southland Player of the Year following her senior season … A two-time SLC all-tournament team selection, Sarver graduated as the school’s all-time leader in kills and digs … She also set the program’s single-match record for kills, and is still ranked among the school’s single-season top 10 list in several categories.
James Gulley (Men’s Basketball, 1984-88)
A four-year letterwinner … Guided the Cardinals to 72 victories, including two 20-win seasons, and two trips to the postseason, which included an opening-round victory over Houston in the 1985 NIT … One of the premier scorers and rebounders during his career, Gulley played in 113 games during his four seasons scoring 1,832 points (16.2 ppg), pulling down 967 rebounds (8.6 rpg) and recording 719 field goals … All three marks still rank third all-time in program history … When Gulley scored his 1,000th-point he was just the 10th player in LU history to do so … Four-time all-conference selection … Named 1985 SLC Newcomer of the Year.
Kalis Loyd (Women’s Basketball, 2009-13)
A four-year letterwinner who played for Larry Tidwell … She helped lead the Cardinals to a 70-42 record over that stretch … During her freshman season, the Cardinals were the Southland Conference regular season and SLC tournament champions clinching the league’s automatic berth to the NCAA Tournament … A three-time First-Team All-SLC selection … Loyd left her mark on the women’s basketball program by becoming the school’s all-time leading scorer with 1,967 points – a mark which still stands … Besides scoring, Loyd ranks sixth in school history collecting 842 rebounds … For her career, Loyd played in 127 games, dished out 371 assists, had 282 steals and recorded 52 blocks, while shooting 46 percent from the floor.