PORTSMOUTH, Va. – Former University of Richmond baseball All-American Sean Casey and football standout Lou Wacker will be inducted into the Virginia Sports Hall of Fame, it was announced on Thursday at a ceremony introducing and honoring the Class of 2014 at the State Capitol.
During his Richmond career, Casey carried an astounding .405 batting average and drove in 158 runs in 158 games. In 1995, he led the Spiders to the NCAA East Regional and the program's first win in the NCAA Tournament, 8-2, against Jacksonville.
During his final season in a Spider uniform, Casey was a Second Team All-American, earned CAA and ECAC Player of the Year honors and became the first player to win the CAA Triple Crown. Casey left Richmond as the all-time leader for single-season slugging percentage (.824) and doubles in a career (67). His 31-game hit streak in 1995 ranked as the second longest in the nation that season, and is the second longest in Spider history. In 1995, Casey led all of NCAA D-I with a .461 batting average.
Casey was drafted in the second round by Cleveland in 1995, but was traded to the Reds just prior to opening day in 1998. In eight years with the Reds, Casey, known as "The Mayor" for his outgoing personality with fans, teammates, opponents and the media, hit .305 with 118 home runs and 604 RBIs in 1,075 games. He was a three-time All Star. His best season was 1999, when he hit .332 for a Reds team that won 96 games but just missed the playoffs.
Off the field, he won Major League Baseball's Hutch Award in 1999 for uncompromising devotion to baseball, dedication to team, community and family, as well as competitive spirit and ability to battle through adversity. While with the Reds, he was twice honored with the team's Joe Nuxhall Good Guy Award. Casey was inducted into the Richmond Athletics Hall of Fame in 2002.
“I am truly humbled and honored to be going into the Virginia Sports Hall of Fame,” Casey remarked. “The University of Richmond was such a huge steppingstone for me growing up to become a man and developing me as a baseball player.”
Lou Wacker, a 1991 Richmond Athletics Hall of Fame inductee, was a two-sport participant from 1952-55 as a member of the Richmond football and track team. He was All-Conference and All-State in football as a running back and defensive back. He set a school record for pass interceptions in a game with three against Wake Forest in 1954.
Wacker was a hurdler on the Spider track team. He played professional football with the Detroit Lions following his career at Richmond. He was the head football coach at Emory & Henry College in Emory, Virginia from 1982-2004. Wacker won 70-percent of his games and was named ODAC Coach of the Year five times.
The 43rd Annual Virginia Sports Hall of Fame Induction Banquet will take place on Saturday, April 26 at the Renaissance Portsmouth Hotel & Waterfront Conference Center in Portsmouth, Va. as the headline event of Hall of Fame weekend. Tickets are now on sale. For more information, call (757) 393-8031 or visit www.vshfm.com.