Russell Goodwin ’15 remains as one of the top multi-sport athletes in Washington & Jefferson College’s long history. He was a three-year starter at quarterback, punter and punt returner for the Presidents’ football program, while also serving as the captain of the basketball team in the winter. In the spring, he served as one of the top pitchers and shortstops in the country for the W&J baseball squad. He also played tennis during his sophomore year. In his three years as the starting quarterback, Goodwin helped the Presidents post a 28-4-1 overall record. In 1913, W&J led the nation in scoring with 347 points. Goodwin helped the W&J basketball team amass an 11-9 record over his last two years at the college, including a pair of victories over Penn State. Goodwin played point guard. The Presidents’ baseball program won 23 games in Goodwin’s three years. He once tossed a three-hitter versus the University of Michigan in which all three hits were collected by George Sisler, who went on to a Hall of Fame career with the St. Louis Browns. Following graduation, Goodwin practiced law for nearly 50 years and was an accomplished college football official. He twice officiated the Army-Navy Game, while also serving as the referee in the 1937 Rose Bowl (Pitt vs. Washington) and the 1941 Cotton Bowl (Texas A&M vs. Fordham).
John Luckhardt is the all-time football coaching victory leader at Washington & Jefferson College with a 137-37-2 record from 1982-1988. Prior to Luckhardt’s arrival, the Presidents had produced only four winning seasons in a 17-year period. In 1984, W&J ripped off nine wins, won the Presidents’ Athletic Conference title and earned the school’s first trip to the NCAA Division III playoffs. W&J claimed 13 Presidents’ Athletic Conference Championships during Luckhardt’s tenure and made 11 appearances in the NCAA playoffs, including two trips to the Amos Alonzo Stagg Bowl (1992 and 1994). A total of 13 of Luckhardt’s former players have already been inducted into the W&J Athletic Hall of Fame. Luckhardt was inducted into the Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame in 2001 and received the American Football Foundation Lifetime Achievement Award in 1998. From 1994 through 1998, he was elected to and served on the American Football Coaches Association Board of Directors. In 1992, he was named the AFCA/Kodak National Coach of the Year, and CNN named Luckhardt the Division III Coach of the Year in 1994. From 1996 until 1998, Luckhardt also served as Washington & Jefferson College’s Director of Athletics.
Dan Primrose ’97 was a three-time First Team All-Presidents’ Athletic Conference defensive lineman who led W&J’s defense during one of the most dominant eras in school history. Primrose collected 263 career tackles which remains as the fifth-highest total in school history. During his four seasons, the Presidents held a 42-6 overall record. W&J also was victorious eight times in 12 NCAA Division III playoff games during his years. Primrose helped Washington & Jefferson claim four Presidents’ Athletic Conference Championships and his squads advanced to four NCAA Division III playoffs. In 1994, Primrose played an important role on W&J’s Amos Alonzo Stagg Bowl runner-up squad. Following his senior season, Primrose was selected as an All-American by the American Football Coaches Association/Kodak and the Associated Press. The AP Little All-America Team includes all players in Division I-AA, Division II, Division III and the NAIA. Since 1980, only 10 W&J football players have earned the Associated Press Little All-America award. Washington & Jefferson College won 10 or more games three times during his career, including a pair of 11-win seasons, which tied the school record.
John Unice ’65 was the face of Washington & Jefferson College basketball four decades, establishing his legacy as both as a player and a coach. He came to W&J as a freshman in 1961 and was inserted into the starting lineup as a point guard in his fifth collegiate game, a spot he would not relinquish for the rest of his career. Unice played all 72 games during his four years. Unice was a two-time team MVP and a two-time All-Presidents’ Athletic Conference honoree. Following his senior season, Unice was chosen to the all-district squad after averaging 14.5 points and 4.5 rebounds per game. He was coached by W&J Athletic Hall of Famer David Scarborough, who called Unice “the finest player I’ve ever coached”. Unice became the head coach at his alma mater in 1976 and took his first team onto the hardwood on Dec. 1, 1976, versus Saint Vincent College. Unice’s coaching career spanned 17 years and he led the Presidents to three PAC titles. He was also named the PAC Coach of the Year three times. In 1984-85, Unice guided W&J to an 18-6 overall record and a trip to the NCAA Division III Tournament. The 18 wins tied a school record and were the most by a W&J squad since 1951. He was selected as the Small College District Coach of the Year. In 1994, Unice was inducted into the Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame.
Michelle Stano Wiley ’98 remains as one of the top softball players in Presidents’ Athletic Conference history. Stano Wiley, who was also an accomplished hitter, was a four-time First Team All-Presidents’ Athletic Conference honoree and a three-time PAC Pitcher of the Year. In 1996, Stano Wiley strung together one of the top pitching seasons in NCAA history as she posted a 24-2 record with a 0.57 earned-run average (3rd in nation). She led the nation in victories and her .923 winning percentage still stands as the 15th best single-season, win-loss record in NCAA Division III history. Following the 1996 season, she was named a Second Team All-Region Pitcher by the National Softball Coaches Association/Louisville Slugger TPS. She was also an ECAC Division III All-Star. Throughout her career, Stano Wiley led the PAC in strikeouts twice and was a six-time PAC Player of the Week. She pitched 77 of a possible 99 games for the Presidents from 1995 until 1998. On April 21, 1998, Stano Wiley pitched the first perfect game in W&J history after retiring all 21 batters versus Thiel in a 3-0 victory. She also tossed a no-hitter versus Chatham on April 28, 1995.
Charles “Ace” Heberling ’49 is a native of Pittsburgh, Pa., and came to Washington & Jefferson College from Perry High School. Heberling was a multi-sport athlete at Washington & Jefferson College. He lettered in football and baseball. During his three years on the football squad, Heberling played running back alongside W&J Athletic Hall of Fame members Melvin Bassi, Walter Cooper and “Deacon” Dan Towler. Heberling also lettered three years for the W&J baseball team as one of the squad’s top starting pitchers. Following graduation, Heberling began a career as a salesman, while also working as a high school and college football and basketball official for 15 years. His great work as an official elevated him to the National Football League as a referee. His career in the NFL lasted 23 years. During his 23 years, he was the head referee for three Super Bowls. In 1976, the WPIAL was rapidly growing as one of the top scholastic organizations in the country and Heberling was selected to become the league’s first full-time executive director. He was a catalyst in establishing a league office to manage the organization on a daily basis. Under his leadership, all four WPIAL championship football games were contested at Three Rivers Stadium during a one-day period in 1986. In 1992, Heberling started the WPIAL Scholar-Athlete program which has awarded over 50 students scholarships from more than 40 high schools. Heberling retired from the WPIAL in 1997 after 21 years. The WPIAL today stands as a model around the county for high school athletic organizations. Heberling is known by many as the man who has had the greatest impact on high school athletics in western Pennsylvania in the 100-year history. Earlier this year, Heberling was inducted into the inaugural class of the WPIAL Hall of Fame. Heberling has also served as a game day observer for officials in college and the NFL.