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Cater's Hall of Fame career a work in progress

September 29, 2007|By BOB PARASILITI

SHEPHERDSTOWN, W.Va. - Shepherd University threw open its doors and enshrined football coach Monte Cater on Friday on one condition.

That he locks the door after he's finished.

Cater holds one distinction over the other four members of the Class of 2007 who were inducted during ceremonies at the Clarion Inn. His Shepherd career is still in progress while everyone else will be listed with a beginning and ending date next to their names.

"This is a great honor to be inducted while I'm still coaching," Cater said. "It's still humbling. This is uncharacteristic. You usually do something great first. For me, I'm still here actively involved in the program."

Because he is still coaching, Cater's records will probably have to be recorded in grease pencil so that they can be continuously updated.

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In his first 20 years at Shepherd, Cater has compiled 140 wins, 10 West Virginia Intercollegiate Athletic Conference championships and is an eight-time coach of the year. He has guided the Rams to six national playoff appearances - two NAIA and four NCAA Division II, including each of the last two seasons - and a recent 28-game regular-season winning streak.

Shepherd is currently 3-1 and in the Division II Top 25.

Cater laughs about his accomplishments, because he was just following orders.

"When I came here, I kept hearing about Walter Barr and then what Mike (Jacobs) had done in the interim," Cater said of his job interview 21 years ago. "It was obvious they wanted to be successful."

Cater held up his end of the bargain along with the rest of the induction class, which includes football/baseball standout Barry "Huntz" Hall (1953-57), softball star Kim Wivell Gerrie (1991-95), 3-point shooting specialist Ben Stephens (1989-93) and volleyball standout Amanda Schmidt Breeden (1995-98). Sports information director Chip Ransom was awarded the Hall of Fame Medallion.

If Cater had his way, the Hall of Fame room would become a party room. He admits his honor came through the help and hard work of others.

"To make the most sense of this would be to have all those people stand up here with you," he said. "No one sees all the time it takes to prepare the football team during the season and in the offseason with strength and conditioning and recruiting. That's not seen on Saturdays. We've had a lot of good coaches working here and have replaced them with good ones when they left."

As honored as Cater was to get his induction while still coaching, he chuckled thinking about the possibilities.

"If I don't keep it up, they might ask to take it back," he said.

Rams' 2007 induction class

· Barry "Huntz" Hall (1953-57) - Led the Rams in rushing for three years as a running back and was a four-year letter-winner on the baseball team, hitting .412.

· Kim Wivell Gerrie (1991-95) - Pitched Shepherd to a WVIAC championship (while winning MVP honors) and an NAIA District 28 tournament berth. She holds the school record with 36 career wins.

· Ben Stephens (1989-93) - Is Shepherd's all-time best 3-point shooter and is in the Top 10 in a number of categories. He helped lead the Rams to the 1991-92 WVIAC tournament title.

· Amanda Schmidt Breeden (1995-98) - A four-time All-WVIAC choice, including two first-team selections. She holds career and season records for digs and kills.

· Monte Cater (1987-present) - The current football coach who has compiled 140 wins, 10 WVIAC championships, six national playoff appearances and is an eight-time coach of the year in 20 seasons.

· Chip Ransom - Named 2007 Medallion recipient for his behind-the-scenes game and publicity work for Shepherd.

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