Flames celebrate UIC Athletics Hall of Fame Class of 2023
Multiple All-Americans, conference champions and program record holders highlight the UIC Athletics Hall of Fame Class of 2023. The seven-member class, which features six former student-athletes and a celebrated former administrator, will be inducted into the department’s Hall of Fame Sept. 23.
The UIC Athletics Hall of Fame Class of 2023 includes Ruvanna Campbell (women’s basketball, 2013-16), Tess Ehrhardt (women’s cross country and track and field, 2011-15), Baggio Husidic (men’s soccer, 2006-08), Josh Mayo (men’s basketball, 2005-09), Zach Peterson (baseball, 2004-07), Jim Schmidt (administrator, 1995-2017) and Stephenee Yancy (volleyball, 2014-15).
“This year’s inductees are among the best to ever wear the red and blue,” UIC Director of Athletics Michael Lipitz said. “Their athletic achievements and significant contributions to UIC Athletics speak for themselves, and we look forward to celebrating them on campus this fall. Special thanks to the election committee for its work in selecting this outstanding class.”
UIC Athletics will honor this year’s inductees at its Hall of Fame Induction Luncheon from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. Sat., Sept. 23, at the Flames Athletic Center during the inaugural Flames Fest weekend (Sept. 22-24). Tickets for the Hall of Fame Induction Luncheon will go on sale Monday, Aug. 7 ($30 per person/$200 for a table of eight). For more information or to purchase tickets, call 312-413-UIC1 (8421).
Details on Flames Fest activities will be announced soon on the UIC Flames website.
UIC Athletics Hall of Fame Class of 2023
Ruvanna Campbell, women’s basketball (2013-16)
A three-time All-Horizon League First Team honoree, Campbell was twice named the Horizon League Defensive Player of the Year and was a three-time selection to the All-Horizon League Defensive Team.
“It is extremely exciting for our women’s basketball program to have Ruvanna Campbell inducted into this year’s UIC Athletics Hall of Fame class,” said Ashleen Bracey, UIC women’s basketball head coach. “While I did not have the opportunity to coach Ruvanna, her accolades are truly remarkable and clearly merit this honor. Ruvanna was a fierce competitor and proven two-way player. She had an incredible career for the Flames. It is our hope to continue to recruit student-athletes with a similar ability to impact the game and program.”
Playing in her hometown of Chicago, Campbell was a strong presence on both ends of the floor, setting the school and Horizon League records for career rebounds (1,277) and ranking second in program history with 1,671 career points. Campbell became the 20th member of UIC’s 1,000-point club during the 2014-15 season, holds the school record for most career field goals made (679) and is fourth in program history with 142 career blocks. She was the Most Valuable Player of the 2014 Women’s Basketball Invitational, setting a tournament record for blocks in a game (eight) while leading the Flames to the first postseason championship in program history.
Campbell is the ninth women’s basketball player inducted into the UIC Athletics Hall of Fame and the program’s first since 2010.
Tess Ehrhardt, women’s cross country/track and field (2011-15)
A two-time Horizon League Women’s Athlete of the Year (2013, 2014), Ehrhardt was a league champion in multiple events. She won the Horizon League individual cross country titles in 2013 and 2014, and she claimed the 3,000-meter indoor title in 2014 and the 5,000-meter indoor championship in 2015. Ehrhardt was also a 2014 United States Track & Field/Cross Country Coaches Association All-Academic Team selection for cross country.
“In the history of UIC cross country and track and field, Tess Ehrhardt is consistently recognized as the best ever to represent the Flames,” said Paul Zavala, UIC cross country and track and field head coach. “Holding nearly every distance school record and winning several conference championships throughout her time at UIC, Tess is a great addition to our 2023 UIC Hall of Fame class, and our program is excited to see her gain recognition for all her accomplishments.”
Ehrhardt broke indoor school records in the mile, 1,000 meter, 3,000 meter and 5,000 meter, and outdoor records in the steeplechase, 3,000 meter, 5,000 meter and 10,000 meter. She still holds UIC indoor records in the 1,000 meter, mile, 3,000 meter, 5,000 meter and distance medley relay, and outdoor records in the 5,000 meter, 10,000 meter and steeplechase.
A native of Geneva, Ehrhardt is the fourth member of the women’s cross country and track and field programs to be inducted into the UIC Athletics Hall of Fame and the first since Jenni Goebel in 2010.
Baggio Husidic, men’s soccer (2006-08)
One of the greatest players in program history, Husidic was instrumental in UIC’s 2007 NCAA Elite Eight and 2008 NCAA Sweet Sixteen runs.
He is one of two first-team All-Americans in program history, the 2008 Horizon League Player of the Year and a two-time All-Horizon League First Team selection. During his 65 career games for the Flames, Husidic tallied 31 points, scoring 12 goals and adding seven assists.
“It is a tremendous honor for Baggio to be inducted into the UIC Athletics Hall of Fame,” said Sean Phillips, UIC men’s soccer head coach. “Not only do Baggio’s individual accomplishments while at UIC and as a professional in the MLS and Sweden deserve a Hall of Fame induction, but the team success earned by Baggio and his teammates is also reflective of this honor.”
Husidic was drafted by the Chicago Fire in the 2009 Major League Soccer SuperDraft and played in 197 professional games from 2009-11 for the Fire, Hammarby IF (Sweden) and the Los Angeles Galaxy. He currently is an assistant coach for the Puerto Rican men’s national team.
Born in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Husidic is the eighth men’s soccer player to be inducted to the UIC Athletics Hall of Fame and the first from the Flames’ 2007 Elite Eight squad.
Josh Mayo, men’s basketball (2005-09)
A two-time All-Horizon League First Team selection, Mayo played in 121 games during his UIC career, starting 111 and averaging 31.7 minutes per game. He finished his collegiate career as UIC’s fourth all-time leading scorer (1,718 points) and his .854 career free-throw percentage remains second best in school history. The sharpshooter also currently ranks second in school history for career three-point field goals made (266) and free throws made (398).
“I am incredibly excited for Josh’s induction into the UIC Athletics Hall of Fame,” said Luke Yaklich, UIC men’s basketball head coach. “He truly represents everything it means to be part of our program, both athletically and academically. Congratulations to Josh on this prestigious honor.”
Mayo led the Flames to three winning seasons in four years and was also named to the 2008-09 National Association of Basketball Coaches All-District 12 Second Team.
The Merrillville, Ind., native is the 24th member of the men’s basketball program to be inducted into the UIC Athletics Hall of Fame and the first individual inductee since Cedric Banks in 2013.
Zach Peterson, baseball (2004-07)
The winningest pitcher in UIC history (27 career wins), Peterson was the 2007 Horizon League Pitcher of the Year, a three-time All-Horizon League First Team selection and member of both the 2006 American Baseball Coaches Association and Rawlings NCAA All-Mideast Region Second Team.
“I’m really excited for Zach,” said Sean McDermott, UIC baseball head coach. “Zach is a hard-nosed competitor and really epitomized what UIC baseball is all about. He came here, he got better and helped us win championships. Zach is a winner and there is not a more deserving UIC baseball player to receive this honor than Zach Peterson.”
A key member of UIC’s 2005 and 2007 NCAA Regional programs, Peterson finished his career with 206 strikeouts over 333.1 innings pitched. The Minnetonka, Minn., product ranks second in Flames history for innings pitched, third in career winning percentage (.771), fourth in career strikeouts and fourth in career starts (42). He went on to play three seasons of minor league baseball in the Kansas City Royals organization, as well as one year with the independent St. Paul Saints of the American Association.
Peterson is the 35th baseball player to be inducted into the UIC Athletics Hall of Fame, and only the third since 2010. The 35 baseball inductees are the most for any UIC athletic program.
Jim Schmidt, administrator (1995-2017)
The longest-serving athletics director in UIC and Horizon League history, Schmidt had a storied 36-year career with the Flames from 1982-2017, serving the final 22 years as the school’s AD.
During his tenure, UIC athletic programs advanced to NCAA postseason play 40 times and won 69 conference championships, twice earning the Horizon League’s James J. McCafferty Trophy (2000, 2007) as the most successful all-around athletics program in the Horizon League. With Schmidt at the helm, the Flames also received their first NCAA Division I postseason bids in men’s basketball (1998), women’s tennis (1999), men’s soccer (1999) and baseball (2003), with women’s tennis creating a dynasty by winning 16 consecutive conference titles and making 14 straight NCAA Tournament appearances.
Under Schmidt’s stewardship, UIC student-athletes excelled in the classroom, posting record collective GPAs, and the Flames added women’s golf and women’s soccer as varsity programs. He spearheaded multimillion-dollar improvements to the UIC Pavilion (now known as Credit Union 1 Arena) and played a critical role in the construction of both the Flames Athletic Center and Curtis Granderson Stadium.
In 2014-15, Schmidt was named Under Armour Athletic Director of the Year by the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics, one of only four honorees from Division I-AAA that year. He is the 13th former administrator to be inducted into the UIC Athletics Hall of Fame.
Stephenee Yancy, volleyball (2014-15)
One of only four players ever to be a two-time Horizon League Player of the Year (2014, 2015), Yancy was a force to be reckoned with during her time at UIC. A 2015 American Volleyball Coaches Association All-North Region selection, Yancy holds the school records for the best hitting percentages in a career (.365) and a single season (.371 in 2015). She also ranks third in Flames history for kills in a season (544) and is a member of the program’s 1,000 kills club, currently ranking 14th in program history (1,056).
“I am excited for the induction of Stephenee Yancy to the 2023 UIC Athletics Hall of Fame,” said Justin Ingram, UIC volleyball head coach. “Along with her career-leading attack efficiency, she made history as a rare two-time Horizon League Player of the Year. I would also like to congratulate (former UIC head coach) Katie Schumacher-Cawley and her staff for helping guide Stephenee to her many accomplishments during her career at UIC.”
Originally from Aroma Park, Yancy is the 11th member of the volleyball program to receive induction into the UIC Athletics Hall of Fame and first since Leslie (Slinkman) Allen in 2015.