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Hall of Fame Speech

August 17, 2014 - Robert "Bubba" Kapral
It never gets old. The OVAC held its 11th edition of its Hall of Fame induction ceremonies Saturday night at WesBanco Arena. The quality of honorees remains at an exceptionally high level after a decade of selections. That speaks volume of the talent and character of the Ohio Valley. The valley's athletic past is tradition rich. This year's class totaled 19. All of the speeches were quality, but three in particular really touched me. Two former Linsly standouts -- Eddie Drummond and Dan Stephens -- were exceptional in their acceptance addresses. Drummond -- who went on to star for Joe Paterno at Penn State -- detailed his transformation from an inner-city Pittsburgh youth to a disciplined student-athlete thanks to his Linsly experience. Stephens -- a three-sports star at Linsly and who went on to gridiron fame at Pitt -- noted the importance his family played into his success, noting he had the "best parents in the world." However, one speech brought tears to my eyes. Chad Brinker's talk was as inspirational and goose-bump yielding as I ever heard at the OVAC event. The former Martins Ferry and Ohio U running great downplayed his gridiron feats, noting it was more important to him about how good a person he could be. He stressed the importance of hard work and the role his family and high school coaches played in his life. Brinker always delivered on the gridiron; Saturday night he delivered a speech for the ages.


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