2004 North Texas Athletic Hall of Fame Class Inducted At Breakfast Ceremony
DENTON (10/23/04) -- The University of North Texas recognized its 2004 Athletic Hall of Fame Class on Saturday morning at the annual Hall of Fame Breakfast Induction Ceremony at the Gateway Center Ballroom.
Bill “Chick” Adams, Ira DeFoor, Andy Everest, Byron Gross, Burks Washington and Royce Womble were all inducted into the North Texas Athletic Hall of Fame at the breakfast. In addition to the 2004 class, all members of the Hall of Fame that were present were recognized.
Each inductee or their designated speaker ended the breakfast by addressing the crowd with a brief induction speech.
THE 2004 CLASS:
Bill Adams’ outstanding four-year track & field career at North Texas State College was highlighted by the 1946 Lone Star Conference Meet, where he was the high-point scorer and led the Eagles to the conference championship. A letterman from 1945-48, Adams picked up a number of first-place finishes at high-profile meets such as the Texas Relays, Border Olympics and Drake Relays.
Ira DeFoor was the starting guard for the football team in 1941 and lettered in track and field from 1939-41 before going on to earn his Bachelor’s Degree and Master’s Degree from North Texas State Teacher’s College in 1948 and 1949, respectively. In addition to serving as an instructor and assistant professor at the University, DeFoor was the athletic department’s long-time equipment manager from 1948-65 and received the Thirty-Five Year Service Award from the
Andy Everest served as Assistant Head Football Coach under Hayden Fry from 1973-78 before spending two years as North Texas State’s Athletic Director from 1979-81. A member of the American Football Assistant Coaches Hall of Fame, Everest was instrumental in the football program’s success during Fry’s tenure in which the Mean Green posted a combined 40-23-1 record. In addition to NTSU, Everest was also an assistant coach at SMU, Stanford,
A four-year letterman from 1987-90, linebacker Byron Gross reached NCAA Division I-AA All-America status his senior season and piled up 387 career tackles that placed him second all-time in the stat behind fellow 2004 Hall of Fame class member Burks Washington. Gross was also named All-Southland Conference four times and Academic All-Southland Conference twice while leading the Eagles in tackles three of his four seasons, including a career-best 122 take downs as a senior. The two-time team captain (1989 & 1990) recorded 84 tackles as freshman, 80 his sophomore season, 101 as a junior and 122 in his final year of eligibility. The standout linebacker started every game of his career, a span of 46 consecutive games. Gross played a key role in the Eagles’ success from 1987-90, a stretch that saw North Texas State post a winning record three of four years and finish the 1987 and 1988 seasons ranked 16th and 12th, respectively, in the NCAA I-AA national rankings.
Burks Washington recorded a school-record 390 tackles from his linebacker position during his four-year career that stretched from 1975-78. In the 1977 season alone
Royce Womble, a running back for the Eagles from 1949-51, was a big part of the 1950 team that was Gulf Coast Conference Co-Champions, rushing for 502 yards and five touchdowns on 78 carries. Following his outstanding collegiate career, Womble was drafted by the NFL’s Baltimore Colts and went on to play six seasons in the league, five with