Inductees When fast pitch softball was a major sport in Peoria, there was perhaps no more talented pitcher than William "Big Bill" Perry.
A large righthander who towered over many of his teammates, Perry was a dominating force in Peoria fast pitch softball between 1942 and 1952, compiling records that seemed almost unbelievable.
Playing mainly for the famed Gipps Brewers, but also in later years, for LeTourneau and Caterpillar, Perry perhaps hit his zenith in 1945 when Gipps went through a 42-6 season and fought its way into the Midwest regional of the Amateur Softball Association.
In that historic season Perry posted a 40-4 record. he allowed just 19 earned runs, produced 24 shutouts, had three perfect games including two in a row, pitched nine one-hit games, and averaged 14 strikeouts a game.
In 332 innings he allowed just 39 runs, 117 hits, whiffed 452 batters, and walked just 43.
Later, pitching for the LeTourneau Welders, Perry went 9-0 to hurl his team to the championship of the Peoria Triple A league.
When Caterpillar joined the National Softball League in 1947, Perry was part of its pitching staff and continued to burn his fast ball past some of the nation's top teams.
He passed away in 1972 at the age of 54, the same year he was inducted into the state ASA Hall of Fame.
When fast pitch softball was a major sport in Peoria, there was perhaps no more talented pitcher than William "Big Bill" Perry.
A 1974 Bradley University graduate and longtime financial consultant for MassMutual Financial Group, Paul Herzog has served as the public address "Voice of the Braves" for nearly 600 Bradley men's basketball games for the past 39 seasons, including every game the Braves have played at Carver Arena and Renaissance Coliseum. In addition to his volunteer service for Bradley, Herzog has served as the volunteer public address announcer for every game the Peoria Civic Center has hosted in the IHSA Boys Basketball State Tournament during its 20-year run in the River City.
While "PA" Paul is well-known for his role with Bradley Basketball and the IHSA, his community service extends far beyond Carver Arena. A Braves Club Board of Directors member for 20 years and a past president (1992-94) of the organization, Herzog also served as president of the Central Illinois Bradley Alumni Chapter (1983-85) and the Bradley University National Alumni Association (1990-91). He also has began emceeing the IHSA State Cross Country Championships awards ceremony in 1996.
Closer to his home in Germantown Hills, Herzog has coached in youth baseball and basketball house leagues and from 2006-13 he was a member of the Germantown Hills Athletic Association Board of Directors. He served as a committe co-chair in the effort to acquire land for the expansion of youth sports in Germantown Hills, which led to the addition of 20 acres to school district property. Herzog also brought a little of the Bradley Basketball experience to the Germantown Hills Grade School Boys Basketball program by serving as the public address announcer from 2008-12.
Herzog is the recipient of numerous service awards, including the Bradley Varsity Club Billy Stone Service Award, the Bradley University Lydia Moss Bradley Award, the IHSA March Madness Volunteer of the Year and the IHSA Distinguished Service Award. He was inducted into the Bradley Athletics Hall of Fame in 2011.