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updated: 4/11/2014 8:29 PM

Burlington Central Hall of Fame induction Sunday

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  • Scott Hoffmeister

    Scott Hoffmeister

By Mike Miazga
Daily Herald Correspondent

Scott Hoffmeister is a bit modest when summing up his football career at Burlington Central High School.

"I don't even know if I would make the team by today's standards," the 1977 Central graduate said.

His football coach at Central offered a more accurate take.

"Scott was one of the fiercest competitors we ever had," said former Central Hall of Fame coach Gary Stran. "He was a hard-nosed runner with a lot of quickness. His senior year he had around 1,400 yards and never fumbled and was unanimous all-conference. He wasn't a real big kid but he really carried us that year."

Hoffmeister, who now resides in suburban Atlanta, is one of five individuals, who along with the 2003 Central state-quaterfinalist football team, will be inducted into the Burlington Central Athletic Hall of Fame Sunday night. The induction program starts at 5 p.m. at Elgin Community College with a cocktail hour, followed by dinner at 6 and the Hall of Fame ceremony at 7.

The rest of the Class of 2014 includes Vicki Braden (Class of 1995), Michelle (Butt) Domson (Class of 1984), Dan Hagberg (Class of 2008), Brian Krantz (Class of 2001) and Darrel Dean Westerbeck (Class of 1953).

Stran noted running backs in that late 1970s era carried the ball in the 12-to-16-times-per-game range. Not Hoffmeister.

"He probably averaged 25 to 28 carries per game and had some games over 30," said Stran. "That was pretty crazy for that era and he played both ways. He was a really humble kid who came from a great family."

Hoffmeister, a former Naval pilot now in his 26th year as a commercial pilot for Delta Air Lines, was surprised when he found out he was going into the Hall of Fame.

"I was shocked," said Hoffmeister, the father of three daughters who has been married to his wife, Pam, for 26 years. "I pretty much figured I was dust in the wind -- an old story a long time ago. It's an honor."

The Central 2003 football team, under the direction of coach Dave Smith, finished 11-1 and advanced to the Class 4A quarterfinals before losing to eventual state champion Driscoll. The 2003 squad is the first football team to gain entrance into the Central Hall of Fame.

Smith, now the head football coach at Dixon, recalled in vivid detail superlatives about the majority of the players on the roster as if he had just left the practice field with them.

There wasn't a weak link on that team," said Smith, who also lauded his coaching staff (which included current BC head coach Rich Crabel) and the former administration of Principal Dave Oleson, Athletic Director Dan Cliffe and Dean of Students Kip Crandall. "They were hard workers who would push themselves to exhaustion. I've been coaching for 29 years and if you look back at that group, that's what coaching in Heaven is supposed to be like. We had a bunch of kids who were hungry, wanted to play, wanted to win and wanted to listen to what we were telling them. They went out on Fridays and did it exactly like we coached them. They were all about the team."

Braden , an all-conference and all-area volleyball standout at Central, helped lead Elgin Community College to a fifth-place finish at nationals in 1997 and later was named to the NCAA Division II all-region team in 1999 while at Rockhurst University in Kansas City.

Braden, the mother of two children, works in the construction industry as a project manager and resides in Plato Center.

As a senior, Domson helped lead the Central girls basketball team to the program's first sectional title. She averaged 19 points and 12 rebounds per game for a team that went 20-9 and won the Big Eight Conference title. Domson, who holds the ECC record for most blocked shots in a season, has three children and works in the banking industry in Burlington.

Hagberg was the school's athlete of the year for the 2007-2008 school year. He set school records in track in both hurdle events and two relays and also led Central to its first Kane County title in 2007. Hagberg was a four-time Ivy League sprint hurdles champion at Cornell. He qualified for the 2012 NCAA finals and was a three-time academic all-American.

Krantz was a state medalist for Central in the shot put and discus (he is the school record-holder in the discus). At Illinois State University, Krantz won a Missouri Valley Conference indoor shot-put title.

Westerbeck, who will be inducted posthumously, earned all-conference honors at Central in baseball, basketball and football and went on to play baseball at Coe College before enjoying a distinguished career as a teacher, coach and administrator in District 300.

Daily Herald Fox Valley Sports Editor John Radtke, a 1975 Central graduate, is the master of ceremonies for Sunday's event.

For ticket information, call (847) 464-6038.

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