Cal fans, we proudly present to you the 2015 California Golden Blogs Hall of Fame inductees. There are few greater indication of greatness than popularity among you, the fans, and we thank each and every one of you who nominated Cal legends and voted week after week. Today, we reveal the five inductees of the 2015 class.
Here is the current Hall of Fame:
Inaugural class of 2009: Mark Bingham (who received and deserved his own post of individual merit), Tony Gonzalez, Jack Clark, Jeff Tedford, Leon Powe, Zack Follett, Marshawn Lynch, Natalie Coughlin, Joe Roth, Jason Kidd and Chuck Muncie.
On the short list of best softball players ever. 1996 Gold Medalist. This article encapsulates her accomplishments
From 1989-93 Granger amassed 1,640 strikeouts and 94 shutouts in 183 games, both NCAA records.The statistic that perhaps exemplifies Granger's dominance are her 25 no-hitters, five of which were perfect games Granger holds the top four spots in single-season strikeouts at Cal, and her 484 strikeouts during her senior year were a record at the time.
25 no hitters. 25 no hitters.
Granger was the winning pitcher when the USA Softball team that won the sports' first Olympic gold medal in 1996. At the 1996 games, Granger finished with a 2-0 record, a 0.87 ERA and 25 strikeouts. Granger, who now resides in Davis, Calif., compiled a 13-7 record in five U.S. Olympic Festivals, went 4-0 in two ISF World Championships and 9-0 in three Pan American Games. She holds record for most consecutive strikeouts in a Women's Major Fast Pitch National Championship (18).
Granger played for Cal from 1989-93. She is the Golden Bears' all-time career leader in wins (119), games played (183), games started (162), complete games (155), innings pitched (1,202.2), strikeouts (1,640), shutouts (94), no-hitters (25) and perfect games (5).
Cal football really wouldn't be Cal football, without this:
Calonico served as Student Director of the California Marching Band in 1976, and has been devoted to the Band and to music in general ever since then. Whether you were in the Band, or were just a fan of Cal Football, the pregame and halftime shows have been a common thread for multiple seasons and even generations. Very few universities, especially in the Bay Area, can lay claim to that sort of shared heritage.
Calonico's love for music extends beyond just a professional venture; his music is active in the charities and benefits scene as well.
Mac is considered by most rugby fans to be the greatest American rugby player ever. Between 2000-2004 he was a 5-time All American at Cal and won 4 National Championships. As a professional for Leeds in England, he became the first American to be named Captain to a Pemiership team. Furthermore, he was the youngest player to ever start for Team USA, and is America's all-time most capped player (meaning international matches started) playing in 3 World Cups.
Cal truly runs in MacDonald's blood as well. After retiring from professional and international rugby, MacDonald returned to the Bay Area to become an assistant coach for Cal Rugby under long-time head coach Jack Clark. Clark's own words about MacDonald:
"‘Big Mac' is truly a singular figure in the history of American rugby," Clark said. "He's consistently demonstrated unwavering sportsmanship and loyalty to team and country. His retirement closes out a generation of our most distinguished internationals. We can only say thanks."
For more on MacDonald, check out our very own interview of the Cal Rugby legend from 2011:
1. What got you interested in playing rugby initially?
1. Well, my brother started playing when I was a freshman in high school while he was a senior. The next year, all of his teammates were asking me to come out, so I decided to give it a try. Plus it was a great way to bridge the gap between the end of wrestling season and the start of football season.
2. What got you interested in playing rugby at Cal?
2. I've always been a Golden Bear, since the day I was born. My dad played football and rugby while he was at Cal and then when he graduated, he went on to be an assistant coach for the football team. After a few years of playing rugby for Lamorinda, I had the chance to come to Cal and further my career and jumped at the chance.
NorCalNick shares some thoughts: