Who are the greatest athletes to ever wear UNBC’s green and gold?
That’s the question to be answered in the weeks to come for sports fans, both local and beyond, as a new Wall of Honour will soon be complete at the Prince George post-secondary school to immortalize Timberwolves alumni.
Its goal is to spotlight those that have made a lasting impact on the program since sports became part of UNBC more than two decades ago.
“The time felt right to create a Wall of Honour to begin to really celebrate those extraordinary individuals who helped build this program into what it is,” said Athletics Director Loralyn Murdoch in a news release.
“We could induct twice as many people as we are honouring this year. Whether an individual is celebrated this year, or in the future, we are hopeful it is a thrill for those who hear their name called. Twenty-three years cannot be properly summed up in one year, but this is a tremendous step in that direction.”
Right now, the school plans to unveil 15 former T-Wolves for the 2021 induction, which will be released in the weeks ahead, adding smaller classes will be considered for future announcements.
Once all have been made public, the curtain will then be lifted on the physical Wall of Honour.
Murdoch says it’s been a tough process for her staff to narrow down the initial candidates for the Northern Sport Centre’s (NSC) latest feature.
“We wanted to start with a class that told a big part of our story as a department, and celebrate them individually,” she explained.
The former women’s basketball coach from 1997 to 2012 also hopes the Wall of Honour can act as an inspiration to younger athletes in pursuing their sports dreams.
“Whether you’re at the NSC, using the facility as a young child, or someone who has lived in this community for 50 years, we hope you stop and enjoy the wall. We hope that encourages those individuals to visit our website and read further. Plus, what an excellent way to display to our current and future Timberwolves what a storied history we have.”
In its time, the T-Wolves have been competitors at both Canada’s highest- and second-highest levels of university sport.
While in the Canadian Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA), UNBC won four B.C. conference basketball titles, two men and two women, and one national championship, the 2010 men’s team.
Both basketball and soccer were granted to transition to U-SPORTS for the 2012-13 season, where they’ve competed since, and athletes have won several individual honours, but have yet to collectively win a Canada West or national banner.
Several hundreds of those talented players have also succeeded as leaders in the classroom and in the community.
“The Timberwolves are synonymous with UNBC and in recognizing these outstanding players, we also recognize them as outstanding people,” adds Interim President Geoff Payne.
“These UNBC Timberwolves that we are celebrating are truly outstanding ambassadors for their team, UNBC, their community and themselves and we could not be prouder.”
Extended profiles and acknowledgments of the Wall of Honour inductees are also set to be posted online on UNBC’s website.
The athletics department says all qualified inductees must be at least one year removed from the final year of eligibility.