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Irving ISD Athletic Hall of Fame Inductees

The first class of Irving ISD Athletic Hall of Fame honorees has been announced.  In its inaugural year, eight nominees have been chosen to be inducted.  These nominees are former athletes, coaches, and community supporters. 

2012 Irving ISD AthleticHall of Fame Honorees: Akin Ayodele, Cedric Colby, Mike Farda, Bob Harrell, Dick Lear, Alan Lowry, David Rose, Deeanna Williams

There will be an induction ceremony open to the public on Saturday, June 16 at 7:30 pm at Singley Academy.

Akin Ayodele – Athlete – Akin was an all area football player for the MacArthur Cardinals in the late 1990’s. He played collegiately at Purdue University where he an All Big Ten selection and was twice named Big Ten Player of the Week, as well as receiving the team’s Kiwanis Citizenship Award. In 2002 Akin was drafted by the Jacksonville Jaguars and played in the National Football League for several teams. Besides Jacksonville, he also played for the Dallas Cowboys, Miami Dolphins and the Buffalo Bills. He has been recognized as Jacksonville’s nominee for Walter Peyton Man of the Year, the Drew Brees Mental Toughness Award and Miami’s Community Co-Man of the Year. Akin continues to support MacArthur High School by sponsoring annual scholarships to MacArthur graduates and by speaking at the MacArthur Senior Breakfast each year.

Cedric Colby – Athlete - Cedric was captain of the highly ranked MacArthur wrestling teams which captured back to back state championships in 1996 and 1997. After suffering a life threatening injury, Cedric returned to the mat to lead the Cardinals to their first state championship. He had a record of 48-2 and was state champion his junior year. His senior year he returned and posted a 51-0 season, capped off by another state championship. He was named the Outstanding Wrestler in the State of Texas. He later wrestled for Brigham Young University.

Mike Farda – Coach - Coach Farda led the Nimitz Viking football team for twenty six years. During his tenure the Vikings qualified for the playoffs eleven times and won 159 games and several district championships. He won many Coach of the Year honors and the football/soccer field at Nimitz is named Coach Mike Farda Field in his honor. In addition to being head football coach, he served as the Nimitz athletic coordinator and oversaw the development of many outstanding programs at Nimitz. Coach Farda passed away in 2010.

Bob Harrell – Coach and Athletic Director – After coming to Irving High as head football coach in 1961, Bob Harrell led the Tigers to the 1962 district championship, which included a stunning victory over defending state champion Wichita Falls High School, which had not lost a district game in seven years. He then served Irving ISD as Athletic Director for the next sixteen years. He oversaw the openings of MacArthur High School and Nimitz High School while serving in that capacity. He also served our country during World War II. Coach Harrell passed away in 2002.

Dick Lear – Community Support - No one exemplifies support for Irving ISD more than Dick Lear. He has supported youth as well as high school activities for many years. He has helped numerous teams with fundraisers and has employed countless students in his Sonic Restaurants. He has been more than generous in his support of teams all over the City of Irving. He remains active in his support of the students and programs in Irving ISD.

Alan Lowry – Athlete – Alan was a standout athlete at Irving High in the late 60’s. He went on to an outstanding playing career at the University of Texas and helped lead the Longhorns to the 1970 National Championship and three Southwest Conference Championships. Alan went on to a stellar coaching career that continues today. He coached at several universities and several teams in the National Football League. NFL teams he coached include the Dallas Cowboys. He is still active as a coach with the Tennessee Titans.

David Rose – Athlete - David was an outstanding running back for Irving High School from 1974 to 1976. He earned all City, All Metro and All Greater Dallas awards, while playing for the Tigers. He had 5 games in which he rushed for over 200 yards. He held the IISD rushing record until 1999. David also spent many years coaching IBFA teams and was instrumental in the careers of many future Irving ISD football players. He remains active in the Nimitz High School Booster Club.

Deeanna Williams – Athlete – Deeanna was a three year letter winner in volleyball and softball at Nimitz High School during the 1996-1998 seasons. She was an outstanding catcher as well as going undefeated as a high school pitcher. She hit the home run that sent the Lady Vikes to the state tournament her senior year. She went on to play softball at Navarro College and at the University of Texas. She led the Lady Longhorns to the Big XII Championship and broke several University of Texas records.

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