More than half a century represented in 2007 Longhorn Hall of Honor inductees
AUSTIN, Texas -- Seven new members will be inducted into the UT Men's Longhorn Hall of Honor during ceremonies surrounding the Texas-Texas Tech football game on November 10. Kansas City Chiefs' All-Pro running back Priest Holmes and the first man to ever pitch a no-hitter in the College World Series, Jim Ehrler, highlight the class.
Blanks, Holmes, McEachern and Murray were selected by a panel of 50 Longhorn lettermen from a current-era athlete ballot that included 16 representatives from all men's sports. Ehrler, Gainey and Talbert were chosen by the Hall of Honor Vintage Committee, which surveys those athletes who completed their careers at least 40 years ago.
The four new current era inductees were the top vote getters in a ballot that included former baseball players Ron Gardenhire and John Langerhans; basketball player Terrence Rencher; football players Raul Allegre, Mike Baab, Alfred Jackson and Herkie Walls; golfers Brandel Chamblee and Brad Elder; swimmer Chris Jacobs; tennis player Steve Bryan; and track runner Robert Primeaux.
Blanks, a two-year starter at shooting guard, helped lead the Longhorns to the 1990 NCAA "Elite Eight" after transferring to Texas from Virginia. He became part of the famed "BMW" Longhorn backcourt that included Blanks, Travis Mays and Joey Wright. In his two seasons at Texas, he helped the Longhorns post a 49-18 mark. Blanks left Texas as the eighth-leading scorer in school history with 1,322 points, the highest total by a two-year player in school history. He concluded his career as the all-time leader in steals (198), and his career scoring average (20.0 ppg) still ranks fourth in school history.
Ehrler pitched on the Longhorns' first NCAA baseball championship team in 1949 and helped them repeat in 1950. He was the winning pitcher in each of the championship games and pitched the first no-hitter in College World Series history, striking out 14 batters and blanking Tufts, 7-0, in 1950.
Gainey, who helped the Longhorns to conference championships in 1957, '58 and '59, earned All-America honors in the 100-yard dash in 1957 and was a part of the world-record-setting 440-yard and 880-yard relay teams. He led the Longhorns to a Penn Relays' gold in the 440-yard relay in 1957, just one week after helping Texas become the first team to run the 440-yard relay under 40 seconds (39.9) at the Kansas Relays. He also was a member of conference champion 440-yard relay teams in 1957 and '59 and finished sixth in both the 100-yard and 200-yard dash at the 1957 NCAA Championships.
Holmes, who is currently in the midst of a comeback with the Chiefs after taking a season off due to injury, rushed for 1,276 yards and 20 TDs during his four years as a Longhorn. His career was highlighted by a 120-yard, three-TD performance in helping Texas upset No. 3 Nebraska, 37-27, in the inaugural Big 12 Championship in 1996. Holmes also was named Most Valuable Player of the 1994 Sun Bowl, which saw Texas defeat No. 19 North Carolina, 35-31, after rushing for 161 yards and four TDs.
Murray, a first-round draft choice of the Cleveland Indians in 1989, elected to come to Texas, where he finished his three-year career as a first team All-American in 1992. For his career, Murray batted .311 with eight home runs and 14 triples, while scoring 197 runs and stealing 139 bases, a Southwest Conference record. He went on to represent the U.S in the 1992 Barcelona Olympics and was selected with the seventh pick in the first round of the '92 MLB Draft by the San Francisco Giants. He went on to play 13 years of professional baseball, including five years in the major leagues with the Giants, the Texas Rangers and the Chicago Cubs.
The group of seven will be honored at a banquet on Friday, November 9 and enshrined at ceremonies during the Texas-Texas Tech game on Saturday, November 10.
Tickets to the dinner are available through the T-Association office (512-471-6864).