On Wednesday, April 15, the University of Nebraska finalized the Nebraska Athletic Hall of Fame class of 2020. Five student-athletes and one head coach make up the class of 2020.
Sam Francis, Football and Track and Field:
Sam Francis was one of the earliest campus stars at Nebraska. As a two-sport athlete, Francis led the Huskers as a fullback in football and a shot-put thrower in track and field.
On the gridiron, Francis was a two-time All-Big Six selection in 1935 and 1936, a First Team All-American in 1936 and the runner-up in the 1936 Heisman Trophy race. Francis was then drafted No. 1 overall in the 1937 NFL Draft by the Philadelphia Eagles where he played for four years before joining the Army during World War II.
For track and field, Francis was a four-time Big Six champion in the shot put and was also the NCAA champion in 1937. Francis also represented team USA in the 1936 Summer Olympics where he finished fourth in the shot put.
Terry Pettit, Volleyball:
Before John Cook took the helm and brought Nebraska four national titles, his predecessor, Terry Pettit, was the one who paved the way for Nebraska volleyball. In his 23-year coaching career, Terry Pettit changed the game of volleyball for Nebraska. From 1977 to 1999, Pettit not only laid the foundation for the program but also helped make Husker volleyball the popular sport it is today in the state.
Through his time as head coach, Pettit posted a 694-148-12 record, placing seventh all-time in Division I volleyball in career winning percentage (.820). Pettit also led the Huskers to 21 conference titles, six NCAA semifinal appearances and a 1995 national title. Pettit was the Big Eight Conference Coach of the Year seven times and Big 12 Conference Coach of the Year twice. Pettit coached two national players of the year, 35 All-Americans and 12 conference players of the year.
Maurtice Ivy, Women’s Basketball:
Every program has its first big star, and for Husker women’s basketball, it was forward Maurtice Ivy. Through her Husker career, Ivy was the first Husker to win conference player of the year, the first Husker to average 20 points per game in a season and the first Husker to surpass the 2,000-point mark in a career. Ivy was also a three-time first-team All-Big Eight selection, the program's first three-time all-conference honoree.Ivy led the Huskers to their first conference championship and NCAA Tournament appearance.
Ivy finished with eight career 30-point games and even a 46-point game against Illinois in 1986. She finished her career with 2,131 points, averaging 19.2 points per game and had her No. 30 jersey retired.
Eric Crouch, Football:
Crouch is known as one of the greatest football players in Husker history and is one of the top option quarterbacks in the history of college football. Through his career, Crouch passed for nearly 5,000 yards and rushed for nearly 4,000 yards, while having a combined total of 97 touchdowns, the most by any player in school history. As a starter, Crouch had a record of 35-7 and led the team to a 1999 Big 12 title and to the 2002 Rose Bowl game.
Crouch also received multiple awards including the 2001 Walter Camp Player of the Year, the 2001 Davey O’Brien Quarterback award, the 2001 Big 12 Offensive Player of the Year and was also named the 2001 Heisman Trophy Winner.
Amanda Burgoyne, Bowling:
It didn’t take long for Nebraska to win a national title in bowling once it became an NCAA sport in 2004. Much of that success can be attributed to four-time All-American Amanda Burgoyne. Burgoyne led the team to two national championships. Along with delivering two national titles, Burgoyne was the 2005 NCAA Championships Most Outstanding Player and the 2007 National Collegiate Bowler of the Year. Burgoyne also holds the record for the highest average in NCAA Championship history with an average of 251.75.
Burgoyne led the Huskers to third-place finishes in both 2006 and 2007. In addition to earning All-American honors every season of her career, Burgoyne won six individual titles. Burgoyne went on to become a four-time member of Team USA.
Jordan Larson, Volleyball:
After finishing runner-up in the 2005 NCAA Championship, the Huskers were able to snatch their third national title in 2006 with the help of outside hitter Jordan Larson. In her sophomore season, Larson was a first-team All-American and the Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year when the Huskers won the 2006 NCAA title in Omaha in front of what was at the time, the largest volleyball crowd in NCAA history.
After earning third-team All-American honors in 2007, Larson was a first-team All-American again in 2008. She was also named 2008 Big 12 Player of the Year, Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year and a second-team Academic All-American. Larson finished her career with 1,600 kills, 1,410 digs and a school-record 186 aces.
Larson would then go on to be a silver medalist at the 2012 Olympics and a bronze medalist in the 2016 Olympics, becoming the only Husker volleyball player to be a two-time Olympic medalist. Larson was named USA Volleyball's Indoor Female Player of the Year twice and also helped Team USA win the gold medal at the world championships in 2014. Her No. 10 jersey is retired.