The COVID-19 global pandemic may have delayed the 2020 Troy High School Athletics Hall of Fame induction ceremony, but nothing can deny their place in history.
This weekend, both the 2020 and 2021 Troy High School Athletics Hall of Fame classes will officially be inducted in a series of weekend events that include recognition at Friday’s home football game vs. Stebbins and a formal dinner and induction ceremony Saturday.
The Class of 2020 includes: Wesley “Doc” Bradford (Class of 1949), David Starkey (Class of 1972), Bill Whidden (Class of 1973), Peg Blackmore (Class of 1979) and Mike Delwiche (Class of 1987).
The Class of 2021 includes: Dick Carnes (Class of 1950), Daryl Chavis (Class of 1960), Aaron Johnson (Class of 1986) and Shane Carter (Class of 2005).
Here’s a closer look at the Class of 2020:
Wesley “Doc” Bradford
Bradford was a three-sport star at Troy, playing football and basketball, while also running track.
His greatest fame came on the football field, where he played for some of Troy’s powerhouse teams in the 1940s under hall-of-fame coach Carlton Kazmaier. He helped lead the Trojans to a 26-3-1 record in his three years on varsity, recording 800-plus yards rushing, 10 total touchdowns and five interceptions.
He later went on to play at the University of Michigan. In 1950, he carried the ball 26 times for 132 yards and a touchdown. Against Indiana that year, he had 15 carries for 105 yards, including a 47-yard touchdown run. In 1951, he finished with 64 carries for 348 yards and three touchdowns.
As a track star at Troy, Bradford was a three-year letterwinner. In 1947, he finished second in the 220-yard low hurdles and 4×200 relay at the Miami Valley League meet. In 1948, he won the 220 hurdles and 880-yard relay and was third in the 100-yard dash at the MVL meet. In 1949, he won the 220 hurdles, was second in the 880 relay and third in both the long jump and 100. The Trojans won the team title all three years.
He also played varsity basketball for the Trojans.
Starkey was a dominant defensive lineman on the Troy teams that went undefeated his junior and senior seasons.
As a junior, he was first-team All-Western Ohio League, first-team All-District and special mention All-Ohio, while leading the team in tackles. He was even better as a senior, earning first-team All-WOL, All-Dayton Area, All-District and All-Ohio. He was selected to play in the North-South All-Star Game.
He also wrestled for the Trojans, going 18-5 as a junior and 18-3 as a senior, qualifying for state. He at one point held records for the fastest pin in school history and most pins in a season in school history.
He was recruited by all of the powerhouse college football programs in the country, eventually choosing to play at the University of Florida. As a freshman, he was the team’s Defensive Player of the Year and made the All-Southeastern Conference Freshman Team.
Foot and knee injuries would derail his final three seasons at Florida. He would still earn tryouts with NFL and CFL teams following his college career.
Despite never having any formal training, Starkey would go on to become a professional boxer. As a heavyweight, he took on such notable contenders as Buster Douglas, Marvis Frazier and Carl Williams.
Starkey, a chiropractic physician, is the owner/operator of the Rutherford Back Institute.
Whidden was a standout football and baseball player for the Trojans, as well as a key member of the nearly unbeatable Troy teams of the early 1970s.
As a junior, he started at both tight end and linebacker, leading the WOL with 24 catches for 698 yards (24 yards per catch) and five touchdowns as a senior. He also had 112 solo tackles and 80 assisted tackles. He was the second-leading punter in the WOL with a 36.3 yard average.
During his football career, he was All-WOL, All-District, the All-District Lineman of the Year and All-Ohio.
Whidden was a star on the baseball diamond as well, earning three varsity letters. As a junior, he led the team in batting average (.417), hits and RBI, earning All-WOL honors. As a senior, he hit .432 and went 5-0 as a pitcher, again earning All-WOL honors.
Following high school, Whidden went on to play at Bowling Green State University, where he was a three-year starter at defensive end. His best season came as a sophomore, when he finished second in the Mid-American Conference with tackles for loss, 17, for a total loss of 76 yards.
He missed only two games in his college career, despite numerous injuries, including broken ribs, a separated shoulder and breaking a hand in three places.
In 2017, Whidden retired after a 35-year career in banking. He currently serves as the Concord Township Fiscal Officer.
Blackmore was a three-sport athlete for the Trojans and one of the first female standout athletes at Troy following the passage of Title IX in 1972.
Her greatest success came in track and field, where she was a four-year varsity letterwinner. She remains the school record-holder in the high jump, as her jump of 5-4 (tied by Jenny Layton in 1985) remains the oldest girls track records on the books.
Blackmore was a three-time team MVP and was the first individual state-qualifier in girls track and field. She won WOL titles in the high jump and long jump and was as sectional and district placer in both events.
She also won varsity letters in basketball, where she was second-team All-WOL and team MVP in 1979, as well as in volleyball.
Delwiche was one of the greatest running backs in Troy’s long history of great backs, leading the team to a Division I state semifinal appearance in 1985, his junior year.
That year, Delwiche finished with 1,628 yards and 25 rushing touchdowns. He also had kickoff returns of 96 and 88 yards, earning second-team All-Ohio honors in the process. That year, Troy went 12-1, falling to national powerhouse Cincinnati Moeller in the state semifinals.
Delwiche was hampered by injuries his senior year, playing in only five games. He still managed to rush for 841 yards and 12 touchdowns, again earning second-team All-Ohio honors.
On the track, Delwiche earned three varsity letters. As a sophomore, he was second-team All-Greater Miami Valley Conference in the 400 relay. As a junior, he was second-team All-GMVC in the 100 and 200. As a senior, he was first-team All-GMVC in the 400 relay and second team All-GMVC in the 100.
He went on to play running back at Boston College.