U.H. inducts four into circle of honor - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

U.H. inducts four into circle of honor

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Jyun "Curly" Hirota (on motorcycle) Jyun "Curly" Hirota (on motorcycle)
Terry Albritton Terry Albritton
Jim Schwitters, on right Jim Schwitters, on right
Vince Goo Vince Goo

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow)

They were pioneers of 4-seperate sports...

from 3-different generations...

but they all changed one school...

and that's why the University of Hawaii was happy to induct four new members into their circle of honor Friday night.

Beginning with Jyun "Curly" Hirota who captained both the UH baseball and football teams in the late 1940's.

As a catcher on the Yomiuri Giants baseball team he helped win 4-straight Japan World Series titles before passing away in 2003.

"He always told me," said Hirota's Son Dean Hirota, "Where else could a boy walk off the Ewa plantation and have the opportunity to play at the University of Hawaii and go on to professional sports."

In 1976 Terry Albritton was an NCAA champion at the shot put.

From 1979-1985 he served as the strength and conditioning coach for UH where he's regarded as a pioneer in plyometrics.

But perhaps his legend in Manoa was most memorable when he set the world record in the shot put as a junior...

with a toss of 71-feet and 8 1/2-inches.

His son Shane remembered his father's accomplishments fondly.  

"My brother (Thomas) and I were always very proud of it and i remember walking around telling people that my dad was a world-record holder."

As far as legends go...no one won more games in Hawaii than men's and women's tennis coach Jim Schwitters.

When he retired in 2003 -- after 38-seasons -- he was the winningest coach in NCAA tennis history, and he did it all on a shoe string budget.

In fact, as he recalled, stuffing 4-players into a room on road trips was nothing new.

"The old story about I could pinch a nickle and make the buffalo move was true. We had 26-day road trips and that kind of thing. We did whatever we could to have a program that was competitive."

Last but not least...Vince Goo was the face of Wahine basketball for 17-seasons.

No hoops coach in Hawaii history -- men's or women's -- recorded more than his 334-victories.

His influence has changed the landscape of all basketball in Manoa, as was evidenced in the hiring of his former player and assistant Dana Takahara-Diaz as Wahine basketball coach in 2009.

"When Dana was introduced at the press conference as the new head women's basketball coach, Goo said, "I was there and there were seven or eight cameras and a whole bunch of print media people and that was great. And that's compared to 20-something years ago when i was introduced...there was one camera there and that was my wife's polaroid."

All the inductees will be honored Saturday night at the halftime of the Rainbow Warrior and Fresno State basketball game.

Tip time is set for 8pm.