Inductees Dave Darnall ended 20 years as basketball coach at Eureka College on top, his final team winning the NAIA Division Il National championship.
Seeded No. 6 in the 24-team tournament, the Red Devils, in their third straight appearance in the tourney and the fourth under Darnall, claimed their national title with a 98-95 overtime win over Northern State of South Dakota. Darnall was named NAIA Division II Coach of the Year.
Darnall finished with a 383-151 career mark at Eureka College. During the last five years of his tenure, Eureka was ranked No. 4 among the winningest NAIA basketball teams and No. 8 during his final 10 years.
During his 20 years at Eureka, Darnall won five Prairie College Conference titles and led his team to District 20 tournament play 13 times. Eureka also won the 1994 Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference title.
A three-time District 20 Coach of the Year, Darnall also was named Prairie College Conference Coach of the Year four times and was selected as the Illinois Basketball Coaches Association coach of the Year four consecutive years through 1994.
He is a member of the Illinois State University and the Illinois Basketball Coaches Halls of Fame, was selected Tri-County Male Coach of the Year in 1993 by the Greater Peoria Sports Hall of Fame and was named Coach of the Year for the NAIA by the College Sports Magazine.
In all, his career coaching record is 504-234 including stints at Stanford, Gridley, Roseville and Momence high schools.
Dave Darnall ended 20 years as basketball coach at Eureka College on top, his final team winning the NAIA Division Il National championship.
|1984 Outstanding Tri-County Sports Figure|
After 30 years of coaching, Tom Peeler ended his career as head football coach at Richwoeds High School with one of the proudest moments in Tri-County football history. He led Richwoods to a Class 5A State Championship. The 21-14 win over Deerfield High marked the first time in 11 years of playoffs a Peoria team got past the second round.