Hip Largent might be one of the most unique inductees into any Hall of Fame.
Now deceased, Largent was added to the Klamath Union athletic Hall of Fame Friday as a contributor, and several individuals said he might be the No. 1 contributor to Pelican athletics, someone known to the students and not many others.
Largent was custodian of Pelican Court.
“He was a great guy. If someone lost something, he was the person who would know where to find it,” long-time local broadcaster Bobby Thompson, himself a KU grad, said.
Largent was more than a custodian, though.
He was the guy who took care of the KU weight room. He was the person who washed physical education and sports team laundry.
Oregon Tech associated head coach Mike Pisan echoed Thompson’s sentiments.
“Hip Largent may possibly be the greatest ever contributor to KU athletics,” were the words printed in the homecoming game program Friday night when the Pelicans took control of second place in the Skyline Conference with their 42-12 victory over Hidden Valley.
“He was a faithful, excitable, enthusiastic fan at all the KU home football and basketball games … and was the designated custodian of Pelican Court and the lockerrooms. He devoted himself to maintaining Pel Court, which opened in 1939,” the program read.
Largent’s addition is unique. No question. That KU has added secretaries, bus drivers and custodians to its Hall of Fame says a lot about the support the school’s athletic programs have had in KU’s 84-year history.
Of the five athletes inducted this year, only Jenny Bjerke and Jeff Bradford were at the luncheon Friday to honor this year’s class.
Missing the luncheon and halftime ceremonies were Kent Hunsaker, Bob Peterson and Wally Palmberg. Coach Bob Hendershott also was unable to make the trip to Klamath Falls for the day’s activities, which included the homecoming parade.
Fred Foulon and Bernard Vaillancourt attended and represented the 1942 football team, which was inducted.
It was the unofficial state champion, and averaged 28.8 points a game, while allowing just 2.4.
The 1942 KU football team went 8-0, and lost a mythical Pacific Northwest championship when it played Vancouver (now Fort Vancouver) High School in Washington.
Also inducted was the 1975 baseball team, and nine players from the team attended the luncheon along with assist coach Dave Steen.
Head coach Earl Huffman, who won his second state title that year, died Sept. 27, but his son, Dave, was in attendance Friday along with his sister Dana.
The 1975 KU baseball team was 21-4 in the regular season and went on to win all three of its playoff games, including a 6-0 victory over Pendleton in the finals, to win the championship.
Steve Matthies is Herald and News sports editor. He can be reached at 541-885-4411, or at email@example.com.