Posts Tagged ‘Indiana University’

Yes, there’s actually a reason for the skipping class and making bad decisions. I mean, it is college so most students don’t need one, but there is at least some motivation behind this crazy week.

Howdy Wilcox Jr. founded the the Little 500 cycling race in 1951 after the Indianapolis 500. Howdy’s father actually won the Indy 500 in 1919.

The Little 500, or just Little 5, consist of 200 laps around a quarter mile track. Between 4 riders, the teams race to complete 50 miles in the fastest time. There are only four rules:

  1. All riders must use the official Little 500 bike that is provided to them for that year. There can be no toe clips or grips, kick stands, water bottles, air pumps, untaped or unplugged handlebars, or any other add-on accessories.
  2. For the safety of all riders, hard helmets must be worn and buckled at all times, as well as biking gloves.
  3. Each team is required to complete 10 exchanges during the course of the race.
  4. At the 198th lap, all riders not on the lead lap will be asked to move to the back or exit the pack. This is done so that all teams in contention on their last 2 laps can make their attempt to win the race. Teams which do not comply with this rule are believed to be impeding the progress of another rider and will be given a 5- to 20-second penalty or even disqualification, depending on the severity of the violation.

The event has grown into a week long festivity you don’t want to miss. The women’s little 500 was added in 1988 and consists of only 100 laps, or 25 miles. Little 50, a running race, and other Alumni races have been added as well.

But with all that hard work and training, there comes a time for celebration. A lot of celebrating. Every year Bloomington hosts several concerts by some big names in mainstream music. The students and bars take in on themselves to host the rest of the celebrations.

Throughout the years, Little 500 has evolved from just the largest collegiate cycling races, to one of the largest collegiate events, period. It’s not just a day anymore. From the Sunday before to the Sunday after, saying “Little 5” refers to the entire week, not just race day.


Along with having a good reputation throughout Bloomington, specifically on campus, the Indiana University Men’s Soccer program leaves lasting impressions on aspiring soccer stars.

Every summer Todd Yeagley and the rest of the IU Soccer Staff hosts a soccer camp for boys between the ages of 10 and 19. The campers get to stay in the dorms and eat at the IU dining halls, getting a feel for college life.

The Indiana Soccer Camp develops players who come it at all levels of play and aim to increase their level of skill by the end of the camp. The players get a chance to train with the the best coaches at the collegiate level.

As a whole the soccer program reaches out to a broad audience, creating better soccer players at all ages and levels. Hopefully, a future Hoosier and professional are in the mix. For more information about the soccer program visit

Photo Courtesy of Indiana Soccer Camps

Photo Courtesy of Indiana Soccer Camps

George Taliaferro and his wife Honorable Judge Viola Taliaferro view an exhibit honoring their achievements.

George Taliaferro and his wife Honorable Judge Viola Taliaferro view an exhibit honoring their achievements.


George Taliaferro is the Jackie Robinson of football. His impact on the game is truly transcendent. He was the first ever African-American drafted in the National Football League, selected in the thirteenth round by the Chicago Bears in 1949.

Taliaferro led the Hoosiers to their only undefeated Big Ten Championship season in 1945, and would later go on to become a three-time All American as a running back, quarterback and punter. Taliaferro, after getting drafted, opted to play for the Los Angeles Dons of the All America Football Conference before eventually playing five seasons in the NFL. He made three consecutive Pro Bowl appearances from 1951 to 1953.

Taliaferro, a book on George with a forward by former NFL head coach Tony Dungy.

I’d argue that Taliaferro is one of the most under-appreciated heroes in sports, breaking the color barrier on pro football around the same time Jackie Robinson put on his Dodger-blue.

“The thing that I liked most about football, was hitting people,” Taliaferro said. “It allowed me to vent my frustrations with being discriminated against in the United States.”

Taliaferro often isn’t recognized as exclusively as the likes of Jackie Robinson, when discussing the impact he had on sports and the civil rights movement. What he did was bigger than sports. Despite facing a lifetime of racism, bigotry and discrimination, Taliaferro overcame, and prospered. He helped the Indiana University president end segregation in the city of Bloomington and on the Indiana campus.

Taliaferro’s impact goes beyond the realm of athletic competition. He was an American hero, and one that deserves more appreciation for his achievements. He will forever have a place in the Indiana Hall-of-Fame, and in the hearts of all those who struggled before he broke through.

Today, Taliaferro is 86 years young, and still lives happily with his wife in Bloomington.


Google is a powerful thing. Maybe too powerful. It can be hard to find just what you’re looking for. Sometimes there’s just TOO much going on. Want to keep up with the Hoosiers but you’re not sure where? Here’s some links to popular IU blogs and news sources for the past, present and future of IU Athletics.

Peegs, the official site for just Indiana. Subscribe and get access to exclusive forums and information. (

The Crimson Quarry. Sounds like it’d be just football, but you can find information and post your own views on most major sports at IU. You can even purchase tickets for upcoming events! (

Hoosier Hype. The student led blog associated with the Indiana Student Daily. (

Hoosier Sports Nation. It pretty much has it all. “A forum of the people, by the people, for the people.” A lot of student contribution and solid information. Follow them on twitter, too. (

Indiana University Insider. Want something more “professional?” From the office of the Indy Star, this source is updated by hired journalists, not students. I’m not convinced that’s always better, but you might find less grammatical errors. (

Hoosier Hystoria. A fun flash back of what IU athletics used to be. Articles from the archives of the Bloomington Herald-Times. (


Mike Clark started his career with the Indiana Hoosiers in 1991. After starting 91 games, Clark finished out his career by being selected to the 1994 third team All-American. Clark’s impact on Indiana soccer was rewarded last year as he was inducted into the Indiana Soccer Hall of Fame.

Following his successful years in Bloomington, the Richmond Kickers of the USISL signed Clark in 1995. With the Kickers Clark won the USISL Championship and the Open Cup Championship.

Then came the MLS Inaugural Player Draft in 1996. There was no guarantee for players in this draft so all Clark could do was hope. Luckily for him he was selected in the fourth round, thirty-first overall, by the Columbus Crew with some familiar faces.


Photo Courtesy of ISIPhotos

The Columbus Crew was home to many Hoosiers after the Inaugural Draft. Clark had the opportunity to play with Todd Yeagley and Brian Maisonneuve again. After playing for the Crew for eight years, Clark chose to retire. He ended his streak in Columbus as the most capped player for the crew and was voted to two MLS All-Star games. He held the Crew record for games played, minutes played, and games started. Clark played in 22 playoff games and 18 US Open games in the black and gold.

Before retiring from the MLS, Clark had dipped his toes in the business world, owning two Great Clips (a hair salon) franchises, while also working at a mortgage company. Who would have thought a soccer star would have been interested in hair cuttery? Beats me.

ken snow

Photo Courtesy of Wikipedia

Danny O’Rourke was a raw talent as a defender and midfielder. Playing for Indiana University from 2001-2004, O’Rourke started every single game, including his freshman year. He was an All-Big Ten selection his sophomore, junior, and senior seasons, and was also a first team All-American his senior season. On top of all of this recognition, O’Rourke lead the Hoosiers to two NCAA Championship wins in 2003 and 2004.

After his career at Indiana, O’Rourke was seen as a great prospect at midfield. In 2005 he was chosen 4th pick overall in the MLS Superdraft by the San Jose Earthquakes. After moving to Houston with the majority of his teammates, he was traded to the New York Red Bulls.

After entering the 2006 MLS Expansion Draft, he was picked up by Toronto FC, who then almost immediately traded him to the Columbus Crew. Growing up in Columbus I’m not sure he was too upset with this trade.

O’Rourke will be back in his roots again as he re-signed with the Crew for the upcoming 2013 season.

After going 9-2 in his senior season at Watkins Memorial High School in Pataskala, Ohio, Eric Arnett took his right-handed pitching talents to Indiana University.

Arnett made his debut for Indiana at Eastern Illinois at the AutoZone Classic. His first start came against Florida A&M in his freshman season in 2007, which also became his first career win.


Photo Credit: Waiting for Berkman

In his sophomore season, he played in 17 games, starting seven times and pitching one complete game. Throughout these games he struck out 37 batters in 66 innings.

His biggest and most successful season was his junior year in 2009. Arnett was named Big-Ten co-Pitcher of the Year, was selected for the First Team All-Big Ten, and was a finalist for the College Baseball Foundation’s National Pitcher of the Year Award. Among these honors, he also was the first pitcher in school history to be named conference Pitcher of the Year. He then went on to play for the Big Ten All-Tournament Team.


Photo Credit: Flickr

Following his junior season, Arnett was drafted in the first round (26th overall) by the Milwaukee Brewers. He is now playing for the Advanced A Brewers, the Brevard County Manatees, where he has a 3.56 ERA.

If there’s an IU soccer alum who has it all, it would have to be Chris Klein. With an outstanding career getting a feel for all aspects of the sport, how could he not have anything.

We’ll start from the beginning. Of course Klein played for the Hoosiers (or else I would notImage be writing about him). In his four years, 1994-1997, he started 88 games. 88. In just his senior year alone he scored 11 goals and registered 11 assists. Even though he didn’t win an NCAA Championship in his four year tenure, Klein was an outstanding player and helped lead his team to the finals, quarterfinals, semis, and the regional semifinal.

After graduating from Indiana, Klein was selected 4th overall by the Kansas Wizards, which would be the beginning of 12 seasons playing in the MLS. While playing for the Wizards (1998-2005) he won the MLS Cup and Supporter’s Shield, both in 2000.

During his time in Kansas, Klein also played for the US Men’s National Team. He played a total of 16 games and scored three goals.


Tearing his ACL in the 2005 season caused the Wizards to trade Klein. He played for Real Salt Lake for the 2006-2007, winning MLS Comeback Player of the Year. Finally, he played for the LA Galaxy, where he set an MLS record in 2008 with the Galaxy by making 118 first team starts. Klein would stay with for the rest of his career, and not just to be on the field.

Klein stayed in LA to become the vice president of the franchise. On January 28, 2013, so about two weeks ago exactly, Chris Klein was promoted to president of the LA Galaxy. Along with this prestigious job, he assistant coaches for the Newport Mesa Soccer Club.

We can now say that an IU Alum has been a President (just don’t specify that it’s not of the US).Image

The saying “Once a Hoosier, Always a Hoosier” sure did stick with player, student, graduate assistant, assistant coach, and then head coach Mike Frietag. Freitag’s tenure with Indiana University and the men’s soccer program lasted a resounding total of 24 years.

He was a defender for Jerry Yeagley at Indiana from 1976-1979. He won the First Team All American in 1979 prior to finishing his Bachelor’s degree in physical education and then stayed at IU to earn his master’s in sports administration.

Mike Freitag

Following his education, Freitag moved on to playing in the MLS for the San Diego Sockers for the 1980 season and then to the Denver Avalanche from 1980-1982.

In 1993, Freitag returned to Bloomington to assistant coach the men’s soccer program under his former coach, Yeagley. After 10 years of coaching beside one of the greatest soccer coaches of all time, Freitag became his successor.


Freitag coached the Indiana University men’s soccer team from 2004-2009. He led them to a championship in 2004, and to either the 2nd, 3rd, or quarterfinal round in each of the other years. He won Big Ten Coach of the Year in back-to-back seasons in 2006 and 2007 and his team won the Big Ten Championship in 2006.

Mike Freitag’s career shows the importance of Indiana University’s Alma Mater.


Although he is not an Indiana University grad, Jerry Yeagley has become an iconic Hoosier from his time coaching the men’s soccer team. With an overwhelming amount of rewards and recognition, Yeagley has become one of the most respected influences of Indiana University.

The men’s soccer team at IU had been club since 1947, but Yeagley had a bigger dream for the program. Receiving no money from the University for his salary, Yeagley, with the help of his wife and players, lined the field, washed the team jerseys, and promoted the team on campus. After ten long years of hard work and commitment, his team was finally recognized by the University and was given varsity status in 1973. In an impressive start, the team played in the NCAA final in it’s fourth season as a varsity team, but Yeagley’s impressive career was just beginning.

Jerry Yeagley’s 31-year career resulted in 6 NCAA Championships, no losing seasons, NSCAA National Coach of the Year six times, Big Ten Coach of the Year eight times, the Bill Jeffrey Award, and NSCAA’s Honor Award. Oh, and he was inducted into the United States Soccer Federation Hall of Fame and the NSCAA Hall of Fame.

Did I mention that he’s also considered by many to be “the most successful collegiate soccer coach in the history of the sport” 


or as others prefer, the “Godfather of College Soccer?” Just in case his previously mentioned honors weren’t enough…

And his overall record as a head coach was 544-101-45. And he has a 68-22 record in tournament play, which just happens to be the best winning percentage of any school. Ever.

Now he gets to watch his son continue the Yeagley legacy at IU, as Todd just won his first NCAA Championship in 2012.