I was on vacation last week, but on Saturday night, the second class of former high school football stars, coaches and officials was inducted into the Capital Region Football Hall of Fame at Michael's Banquet House in Latham.
Former local stars Adam Terry of Queensbury and Anthony Weaver of Saratoga Springs were in attendance at the ceremony and among 14 players inducted into the hall. Four coaches, including South Glens Falls native Murry O'Neil and the late Bernard "Putt" LaMay of Glens Falls were also inducted, along with official Lew Varney of Glens Falls, and longtime former RPI and high school coach Joe King, who was inducted for service to football.
Terry was a two-way standout as a lineman at Queensbury, where he graduated in 2000, and helped the Spartans to back-to-back appearances in the state Class A final. He made the all-state team twice and went on to Syracuse University, starting 35 games as an offensive tackle and was named All-Big East and ECAC All-Star as both a junior and senior. He was drafted in 2005 by the Baltimore Ravens, for whom he played five seasons, and also played in the NFL for Indianapolis, San Diego and Jacksonville. He is currently a free agent.
Weaver starred as a defensive end and fullback for Saratoga before graduating in 1998, earning USA Today honorable mention All-America status as a senior. He went on to play four years at defensive end at Notre Dame, for whom he was a captain as a senior in 2001 and earned the team's MVP and lineman of the year awards. A second-team All-American as a senior, Weaver was drafted in the second round by the Baltimore Ravens and also played for the Houston Texans. He now coaches on the collegiate level.
Varney, a 1959 Glens Falls graduate, was an official for 33 years and has evaluated officials for the last five years. He served two terms as president of the Adirondack Chapter of Certified Football Officials, and was a 28-year member of the executive committee. Varney won the National Football Foundation and College Hall of Fame Outstanding Football Official Award in 1998 and the New York State Merit Award from NYSACFO.
Putt LaMay served for 34 years in high school athletics at Fort Edward, Saratoga Springs and Glens Falls, including 25 years as coach and athletic director at Glens Falls. He finished his career (1943, 1946-48, 1953-72) with a 126-36-8 record. He coached the Indians from 1953-72, winning 10 Northern Conference football championships. The new football field at Glens Falls High School is named for LaMay.
O'Neil, a South Glens Falls graduate, started his teaching and coaching career at his alma mater, before moving on to Burnt Hills, where he started the football program and coached the Spartans for their first 30 seasons, from 1955-84.
King was RPI's head football coach for 22 seasons. Before that, he was a highly successful coach at Watervliet and St. Peter’s (now Saratoga Central Catholic).
Also inducted as players were Josh Beekman (Amsterdam), James Canfield (Catholic Central), Mike Caruso (Shenendehowa), Greg Christodulu (Gloversville), Kevin Clemente (CBA), Chad Dukes (Colonie), Deval Glover (La Salle), Gary Jones (Ravena), Steve Lang (Shenendehowa), Matt Shell (Gloversville), Bob Smith (Cardinal McCloskey) and Alex Sokaris (Albany). Shell is currently head coach at Burnt Hills, and Sokaris coached Albany in the 1970s and '80s. Also inducted were coaches Bob Gould of Gloversville and the late Dan Reinfurt of Watervliet, and official John Soffey (Capital District Chapter).