SIOUX FALLS — Two former National Football League players and the all-time home run champion in South Dakota amateur baseball history headline a group of ten new inductees into the South Dakota Sports Hall of Fame. The banquet will be held Saturday, April 25th at the Sioux Falls Convention Center. Tickets will be available beginning in March.
Doug Eggers graduated from Wagner High School and had an outstanding football career at South Dakota State University. He then went on to spend five years with the Baltimore Colts. Darwin Robinson of Redfield was a record setting football player and track & field athlete at Dakota State College. He then became a member of the Washington Redskins. Kevin Leighton of Madison hit over 500 home runs in his long amateur baseball career, winning numerous state titles along the way.
Other inductees in the Class of 2020 include Bruce Conley of Sioux Falls, Ken Ruml of Howard, Heather Sieler of Huron, Lavern Diede of Freeman, Randy Fletcher of Lennox, Ron Mitchell of Sioux Falls and Steve Withorne (deceased). Conley was a long-time sportswriter at the Argus Leader. Ruml is one of the most successful wrestling coaches the state has ever produced. Sieler was an outstanding all-around athlete at Huron High School before starring in basketball at South Dakota State University. Diede was very instrumental in the early development of girls’ sports in the state, especially track & field and cross country. Fletcher was an outstanding basketball player for Dakota Wesleyan College. Mitchell spent decades as a successful coach for deaf athletes, achieving national acclaim. Withorne spent many years as a high school and college official after wrapping up his athletic career at Dakota Wesleyan College. He passed away in 1999.
The South Dakota Sports Hall of Fame was started by the South Dakota Sportswriters Association. It is now managed by a group of volunteers from across that state. There is a display honoring past Hall of Fame members and this year’s inductees inside the Denny Sanford Premier Center. The entire list of people enshrined can be found at the website www.sdshof.com.