2011 Hall of Fame class to be inducted Nov. 5
Wednesday, October 12, 2011
2011 Hall of Fame class to be inducted Nov. 5

Lipscomb Director of Athletics Philip Hutcheson announced Wednesday that Jim Allen, Beth Willis Dolente, John Friend and Farrell Gean will be inducted as the latest members of the Lipscomb Athletics Hall of Fame in a ceremony on Nov. 5 on the Lipscomb University campus.

The Hall of Fame presentation will begin with a congratulatory reception at 11 a.m. in the Allen Arena Hall of Fame room followed by the induction luncheon at noon on the Allen Arena floor.

Tickets to the event are $15 per person and are available by contacting Rhonda Lehmer at 615-966-5899 or rhonda.lehmer@lipscomb.edu.

The 2011 Lipscomb Athletics Hall of Fame Inductees

Jim Allen (Meritorious Service)

Jim Allen is a long-time friend of Lipscomb athletics and has served the Lipscomb community for many years, first in the administration and now as a Trustee. Allen and his wife Linda have also helped to shape the campus in significant ways funding the construction of the Allen Bell Tower as a memorial to their son, Michael, and making the largest single gift in Lipscomb history to build Allen Arena.

Director of Athletics Philip Hutcheson on Jim Allen:
"Many inside and outside the Lipscomb community know about the impact that Jim has had on the Lipscomb campus through his work on the Board of Trust, his time here as vice-president of business affairs and his generous support of the University throughout the years.  And while the Allen Bell Tower and Allen Arena are certainly iconic features on the Lipscomb campus, what many don't see is the heart that Jim has for the students and the University as a whole.  No one has been a bigger, more engaged supporter of Lipscomb Athletics ‘on the field’ than Jim has, and no one has stayed with us, win or lose, more than he has.  Even more importantly, every step of the way, Jim has been behind Lipscomb's efforts to help our programs excel in the classroom, in the community and in their efforts to live out Lipscomb's Christian mission, and it that dedication to all parts of the Lipscomb Athletics mission that have made him such a worthy inductee into our Hall of Fame."

Beth Willis Dolente (Athlete)

Beth Willis Dolente played on the Lady Bisons basketball team from 1990-94 leading the team to a 75 percent winning percentage over her career and an appearance in the NAIA Championship game in 1994.  She was a first team All-American in 1993 and an honorable mention All-American in 1994.  Willis finished her career among the top five in program history for both scoring (2,258) and rebounding (911) and at the conclusion of her junior season, the NAIA awarded her the Emil S. Liston Award honoring her scholarship, character and playing ability.

Director of Athletics Philip Hutcheson on Beth Willis Dolente:
"There are some athletes who could have played for Lipscomb in any era and Beth was one of those.  She was a talented and fierce competitor and she raised the bar not only for her teams and teammates around her, but also for the women's basketball players that have followed since then.  While her national accomplishments and honors certainly merit her inclusion in our Hall of Fame, her resume is made all the more impressive by her outstanding work in the classroom and in her professional life since graduation.  When Lipscomb's women's basketball holds up past players as examples of the types of student-athletes we're looking for, Beth is certainly one of those at the top of the list and we are thrilled to recognize her as a part of this special group."

John Friend (Athlete/Meritorious Service)

John Friend was a member of the Bison basketball team from 1954-57 playing a leading role in Lipscomb’s march to the VSAC tournament all four years, including the championship game in 1956.  He served as director of athletics at Purdue University-Calumet from 1980-2001 and was the conference commissioner of the Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference.  His athletic accomplishments have been acknowledged by his selection to six Halls of Fame: Purdue Calumet, the Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference, the National College Football Coaches Association, the American Football Coaches Association, the Indiana Football Hall of Fame, and the NAIA Hall of Fame.

Director of Athletics Philip Hutcheson on John Friend:
"As a student athlete at Lipscomb, John was a leader on and off the floor, and he has continued to lead ever since then. He has made a positive and lasting impression on every team and program of which he has been a part, and his having already been inducted into an incredible six different sports Halls of Fame across the nation attest to the tremendous work he has done over the years.  John has been a winner and helped to build winning organizations wherever he has gone, but it is the humility and class which he has displayed in his many different roles that has served as such a great representation of the type of servant-leaders that Lipscomb strives to produce.  We are happy to add one more Hall of Fame to his resume as we welcome him as a part of the 2011 Hall of Fame class."

Farrell Gean (Athlete)

Farrell Gean attended Lipscomb from 1968-72 where he achieved the rare accomplishment of lettering four years in both basketball and baseball.  Gean averaged 15 points per game over his career and was team captain in 1972.  He was just as accomplished on the baseball diamond where he played a leading role in the program’s ascent to national prominence.  In 1971 and 1972, Gean helped lead the “Miracle Bisons” in their first trips to the NAIA World Series.  During his career he set school records in hits, doubles, home runs, and RBI’s.  He has dedicated his career to education, first as a professor in Lipscomb’s School of Business and for the past 30 years as Professor of Accounting at Pepperdine University.

Director of Athletics Philip Hutcheson on Farrell Gean:
"During his days at Lipscomb, Farrell was living proof that the terms ‘student’ and ‘athlete’ were not mutually exclusive.  Farrell's exploits on the diamond and hardwood were well-known, but it was his hard work and ability in the classroom and his engaging manner around campus that helped him make such a lasting mark on the Lipscomb landscape. Equally impressive, since his days as a baseball and basketball standout and Lipscomb's Bachelor of Ugliness, Farrell has truly ‘paid it forward’ by continuing to share his gifts and abilities in the classroom and communities of which he has been a part, and it is for all of those reasons that we are delighted to welcome him into the Lipscomb Athletics Hall of Fame."