Inductees Forddy Anderson was one of the great college basketball coaches of his generation, and he was the first coach ever to lead the Bradley Braves to a number one national ranking.
He coached at Bradley for six remarkable years and compiled a brilliant 142-56 record during that period. His 23-win average is one of the winningest totals in college basketball history.
His first three Bradley teams actually averaged an unprecedented 30 wins a year as they rolled up records of 27-8, 32-5 and 32-6. His 1949-1950 team remains the only team ever to finish second in both the NCAA and NIT Tournaments.
His last Bradley team, the 1953-54 team, duplicated the second place NCAA finish, finally bowing to a powerful LaSalle team in the championship game.
Following his successful Bradley career, Anderson went on to earn the respect of the Big Ten as the head coach at Michigan State University, and he later became a professional basketball scout for the Golden State Warriors.
Forddy Anderson was one of the great college basketball coaches of his generation, and he was the first coach ever to lead the Bradley Braves to a number one national ranking.
Larry Leitner was among the state's elite officials for more than 40 years, officiating high school, college and professional sporting events from 1960 through 2003 and he remains involved in sports by serving on the board of directors for the Pekin Insurance Holiday Tournament, as well as evaluating current officials and moderating IHSA rules clinics.
Among his officiating highlights, Leitner worked more IHSA basketball and football tournament games than any official in the state's history, earning 27 consecutive boys basketball regional assignments. He also worked the IHSA boys basketball state finals in 1973, 1974 and 1976, including the 1976 championship game, and three IHSA football finals, including the first-ever 2A state championship game in 1974. A charter member of the Gateway Conference officiating crew in 1988, Leitner was part of the crew that officiated the 1990 and 1993 NCAA Division I-AA quarterfinals and he served as an associate official for the Big Ten Conference from 1984-88.
Leitner also was called upon to officiate two IESA state championship games, the 1990 National Catholic Basketball finals, three Shriner All-Star football games and the 1980 IBCA All-Star Classic, while also working for two seasons in the Midwest Professional Football League.
Leitner is a member of the Illinois Basketball Coaches Association, Peoria Officials and Bloomington/Normal Officials Halls of Fame.