Hall of Fame

RHS Athletic Wall of Fame gives recognition to accomplished student athletes

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Ali Norris

The Athletic Wall of Fame is located in the commons of RHS and down the athletic hallway.

The Athletic Wall of Fame was started in 1989 by former RHS Athletic Director Jerry Barchet to give recognition to student athletes for the special accomplishments made during their seasons.
“It really started as a way to promote athletics,” RHS Athletic Director Tom DeSana said. “We had students that were doing great things in their sport, and it was felt that they should be recognised for their accomplishments.”
A student makes the Athletic Wall of Fame by having a special recognition during their season.
“We define a special recognition by doing something like being all league, all region, all area, state qualifier, or state champion,” DeSana said.
Sophomore Myah Greene will be added to the Wall of Fame this year for making all league in cross country during the 2021 season.
“It feels pretty cool to be on the Wall of Fame, but it is also kind of intimidating because my picture is going to be up there for people to see for a while,” Greene said.
Another student-athlete who will be added to the Wall of Fame this year is junior Michael Makuch. Makuch won the league championship in boys cross country during the 2021 season.
“Honestly, I was super surprised that I made it, but I’m glad that I did,” Makuch said. “It is such an honor to have your name up there for everyone to see.”
Both Makuch and Greene did not set a goal to be on the Wall of Fame, but earned the honor from achieving other goals they had set for themselves.
“While getting on the Wall of Fame was awesome, it wasn’t a specific goal I had set,” Greene said. “I had always looked at the wall and thought it would be cool to be up there, but I never thought much of it until it was announced I made it.”
The wall is a great motivation for many athletes to work hard during their season to see themselves on the Wall of Fame at the end of the year.
“I think that this is a good tradition to stick with because it motivates athletes to want to see their name on the wall and be recognised for doing something great,” DeSana said.
Makuch earned his spot not only on the Wall of Fame but also as League champion by doing the best he could each race.
“I think being on the Wall of Fame just came naturally with the hard work I put in each day,” Makuch said. “My goal was to help out the team by doing the best that I could each race and every accomplishment this season came from that.”
Though the wall is worth the work, DeSana admits it is a lot to keep up with year after year.
“It is a lot of work continuing to do it every year,” DeSana said. “But it is cool when everyone sees their name up there and sees they are recognised for what they did.”
One of DeSana’s goals going forward is to make the Wall of Fame a digital experience, which will fix the problem of limited space for the pictures and the work that goes into exchanging the pictures each year.
“One goal of mine before I retire is to make it digital,” DeSana said. “We are limited on space and it takes a lot of work to get about seventy pictures down and put a new seventy up each year.”
DeSana also hopes that a digital wall would provide for an expanded and more enjoyable experience for viewers.
“I would love to have a big touchscreen out there, there is just so much you can do with it,” DeSana said. “You could organize the athletes by sport, year, teams, individuals, however you want.”
DeSana also hopes that turning digital will provide more opportunities of what can be included on the wall.
“We could add video and more pictures if we go digital, we have hudl and yearbook and so many ways of documentation that could go into it,” DeSana said. “We could also include years past and go back to the beginning, so that athletes are up there forever, not just one year.”
Student athletes are also enthusiastic about DeSana’s decision to turn the Wall of Fame digital.
“I think it is awesome that the Wall of Fame could be digital one day,” Makuch said. “I’m not too good at technology so it may not apply to me but, it will be nice that my kids will be able to look back and say ‘oh wow, that’s my dad.’”
This year, the wall will include state placers for the first time in years.
“This year we get to include a few wrestlers that made all state this season, which is always exciting,” DeSana said. “We haven’t had state placers on the wall in the past few years so it is cool to be able to show that off.”
This year’s wall will also include many teams that had major accomplishments during their seasons, including girls and boys bowling and wrestling who all won their league.
“We have a few teams coming onto the wall because they did very well this year,” DeSana said. “It is even more of a reason to get working on the future of the wall because we need more space for our teams that are accomplished.”
Along with the addition of more state qualifiers and teams, another feature of the current Wall of Fame is the Athlete of the Year, which is displayed in the middle of the Wall of Fame.
“Overall, everything we do is because we want to recognise our student athletes for the work they put into their sports,” DeSana said. “We have amazing athletes at Wyandotte that should be honored for what they do and we do that through our Athletic Wall of Fame.”