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FGCU establishes athletics hall of fame

Florida Gulf Coast University fans get revved up for a game at Alico Arena. (Linwood Ferguson/FGCU Athletics)

FORT MYERS – The Florida Gulf Coast University’s athletics program has created a hall of fame.

Its first inductees were a slam dunk.

The school’s legendary “Dunk City” men’s basketball team, which reached the Sweet 16 of the 2013 NCAA tournament, will be inducted in the first class in February 2021. The team is also scheduled to be honored when the University of Southern California visits FGCU in November. USC coach Andy Enfield was the coach of the “Dunk City” team.

“We are extremely excited to finally be commencing our Athletics Hall of Fame. Countless individuals have combined to produce so much collective success over our first two decades, which will create a much appreciated and recognized challenge for our HOF Committee to handle now and into the future,” Ken Kavanagh, director of athletics, said in a statement announcing the new hall of fame on April 30.  “In turn, the transformational University-wide legacy generated by our 2012-13 men’s basketball team more than lent itself to be treated in a special manner, relative to waiting the minimum post 20-year tenure required in our bylaws.”

The Seminole Tribe has a history with FGCU athletics. The Tribe is a major sponsor of the annual “Night at the Nest” fundraising event at Alico Arena which raises thousands of dollars for the athletics program. FGCU’s basketball, softball and volleyball teams have held clinics for Tribal youth on Seminole reservations and at Alico. Tribal member Ahnie Jumper, from the Big Cypress Reservation, is a catcher on FGCU’s softball team.

The Hall of Fame Committee consists of Dana Caldwell, Mike Estes, Susan Evans, J Webb Horton, Ken Kavanagh, David Moulton, Kathy Peterson, Butch Perchan, Dr. Tom Roberts, Dr. Bob Ryan, John Sinnett, and Donna Sublett.

An open call for nominations of worthy candidates for induction as part of the first class on an individual basis will run June 1-July 31. The committee will finalize the inaugural class in October before announcing shortly thereafter.

FGCU athletics is embarking on its 20th year of competition in 2020. The school  has won 82 conference regular season and tournament titles in just 12-plus seasons at the Division I level. The Eagles competed in Division II prior to moving to D-1.

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