Kimball, Wheatley Chosen for Michigan Sports Hall of Fame
MGOBLUE Tyrone Wheatley
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Tyrone Wheatley
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Nov. 12, 2012

AUBURN HILLS, Mich. -- Two former Michigan greats -- diver Dick Kimball and running back Tyrone Wheatley -- have been selected as part of the 57th induction class for the Michigan Sports Hall of Fame, announced Monday night (Nov. 12) at an announcement event held at the Palace of Auburn Hills. Kimball and Wheatley are among the eight individuals in this year's induction class.

Dick Kimball was the Wolverines' diving coach for 43 years, coaching from 1960-2002. He was part of five NCAA national championship teams and 33 Big Ten Conference championship teams with the U-M men and women as both a student-athlete and coach. His recognition from those teams include being named the NCAA Diving Coach of the Year in 1984 for men and women while also earning the honor as the women's Coach of the Year in 1988. On the conference level, Kimball earned the Big Ten Diving Coach of the Year on four different occasions. Kimball had seven Big Ten women's diving champions to his credit and nine men that combined for 11 titles.

As a collegiate diver, Kimball was a member of three NCAA championship swimming and diving teams at Michigan from 1957-59. In 1957, he won the NCAA championship in both the one-meter and three-meter springboard events. In addition, Kimball was the Professional World Diving champion in 1963.

He coached on five U.S. Olympic Diving Teams (1964, 1980, 1984, 1988 and 1992) and mentored nine Olympic medalists, including gold medalists Bob Webster (1960 and '64, platform), Micki King ('72, three-meter), Phil Boggs ('76, three-meter) and Mark Lenzi ('92, three-meter).

Kimball was inducted into the International Swimming Hall of Fame and the University of Michigan Hall of Honor in 1985.

Tyrone Wheatley, a running back at U-M from 1991-94, finished his career with 688 carries for 4,178 yards (6.0 avg.) and 47 rushing touchdowns. Wheatley held the scoring record for rushing TDs until Anthony Thomas surpassed his mark in 2000. His 54 career touchdowns rank third all-time behind Willie Heston (72, 1901-04) and Thomas (56, 1997-2000). He had 20 career 100-yard rushing efforts, including seven games with more than 150 yards.

Wheatley was named the 1993 Rose Bowl MVP after setting a bowl-game record with 235 yards rushing and three touchdowns in the victory over Washington. He was also selected the 1994 Hall of Fame Bowl Most Valuable Player. Wheatley was a three-time All-Big Ten selection (1992-94) and earned the 1992 Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year award. He placed eighth in the 1993 Heisman Trophy balloting and 12th in the 1994 voting.

In track and field, Wheatley was an All-American and Big Ten champion in the 110-meter hurdles. He continues to list among the greatest high hurdlers in school history with personal bests of 10.46 and 13.77 in the 60m and 110m events, respectively.

After Michigan, Wheatley played 10 seasons in the National Football League. He was a first-round pick of the New York Giants in the 1995 NFL Draft (17th overall selection). Wheatley spent four seasons with the Giants (1995-98) and six additional seasons with the Oakland Raiders (1999-2004), making an appearance in Super Bowl XXXVII with the Raiders.

Wheatley began his coaching career after retiring from the NFL. He coached his former high school, Detroit Robichaud, during the 2007 season. He spent one season at Ohio Northern (2008), Eastern Michigan (2009) and is in his third season at Syracuse (2010-current).

Joining Kimball and Wheatley in this year's induction class are Mateen Cleaves, Lomas Brown, Tony Dungy, Mark Howe, Steve Smith and Pam McGee.

Media Contact: David Ablauf (734) 763-4423


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