De La Salle Collegiate is proud to announce that it will induct a new Athletic Hall of Fame class during the 2022-23 school year. The 2022 Hall of Fame class, which will consist of six individual inductees and one team, will be formally enshrined during a ceremony on Saturday, September 17, 2022.
The 2022 class will be the seventh Athletic Hall of Fame class in the 96-year history of the school. The inaugural class was inducted in 2000 and featured the likes of longtime athletic director and school administrator Br. George Synan, Super Bowl champion Chris Godfrey, ‘76, and the 1956 Catholic and city championship Pilots football team.
Meanwhile, the most recent class, inducted a year ago, marked the return of the Athletic Hall of Fame after a 13-year hiatus. The 2021 class included the likes of longtime De La Salle president and school icon Br. Robert Carnaghi, St. Joe’s '48, Stanley Cup champion Craig Wolanin, DLS '85, and the 2000 Pilots state championship baseball team.
De La Salle Athletic Director Dan Rohn believes this year’s Athletic Hall of Fame class is equally impressive.
"This year’s class features some of the most accomplished coaches and athletes in the history of De La Salle. It also features a great state championship team in the 1991 state championship bowling team,” Rohn said. "This is a special collection of individuals that embodies exactly what it means to be Lasallian. I’m proud to call each of them Pilots.”
Hall of Fame Weekend
Inductees will be introduced at halftime of the De La Salle varsity football game on Friday, September 16, against Catholic League Central Division rival Birmingham Brother Rice. Game time is set for 7 p.m. at Wayne State University’s Tom Adams Field.
The formal induction ceremony will take place on Saturday, September 17, starting at 3:30 p.m., inside the school’s TARMAC. A short reception, with food and beverages, will follow. Doors on Saturday will open at 3 p.m. Any questions regarding the weekend can be directed to Dan Rohn at email@example.com.
2022 Hall of Fame Inductees:
Craig Abraham, ‘92
Abraham was a three-year varsity letter winner on both the De La Salle soccer team and basketball team. He was an All-Catholic soccer player, and was a member of the Pilots’ 1990 state championship soccer team, the first in the history of the DLS soccer program. He went on to Michigan State, where he was a teammate of current MSU soccer head coach Damon Rensing. Playing from 1994-96, Abraham earned All-Big Ten honors three times, and twice was named to the NSCAA All-Region Team. He started in every game of his career, and helped the Spartans earn a 24-8-5 record during the 1995 and 1996 seasons. He was also captain of the 1996 Spartans squad.
John Bernard, ‘70
Bernard was a member and co-captain of the first all-Black team to win a Little League baseball state championship (1964). Starring in basketball for the Pilots, he graduated from De La Salle - after his initial high school, St. Gregory, closed down – with a combined 15 varsity letters. Upon graduation, he was a member of the University of Michigan's men's basketball team from 1970-73. His standout basketball career also included winning three St. Cecilia summer pro league championships. Since leaving U-M, he's been an accomplished businessman, serving as senior vice president at Morgan Stanley. He's also been the national co-chair of finance for the nonprofit, 100 Black Men of America, and he co-founded the Detroit chapter of the organization. He served on the De La Salle Board of Trustees from 2013-19. Additionally, he returned to the DLS Board of Trustees in 2021, and is presently the vice chair.
A highly-regarded coach for many years, Buslepp guided 37 different teams during his time as a coach, and in three different sports (football, basketball and baseball). He led 21 of those teams during his time at De La Salle. He may be best remembered for his Pilots basketball teams, which included one state finalist, two state semifinalists and the first ever Catholic League tournament championship squad in school history (1987-88 season). He also served as athletic director during his time at DLS. During his tenure as Pilots AD, he ushered in two new sports – soccer and lacrosse (both of which eventually became state champions). His 1981-82 state finalist basketball team has since been honored in the DLS Athletic Hall of Fame. Additionally, Buslepp was named the co-honoree for the 2021 Christian Brothers’ Dinner, and he is a member of the Detroit Catholic High School League Hall of Fame (class of 1987).
“I’ve looked at the names of the other student-athletes and coaches being inducted, and I’m honored,” Buslepp said, regarding being enshrined into the De La Salle Athletic Hall of Fame. “And, to be inducted as a coach, knowing that De La Salle has been blessed to have many great coaches over the years, including the likes of Thaier Mukhtar (soccer) and Greg Esler (basketball), it’s a real honor, and I’m humbled by it.”
He added, “I’m very thankful for all the players that I coached. They’re a big part of this honor. Without them, I wouldn’t have been nearly as successful, and this wouldn’t have been possible.”
Mike Decker, ‘75
Decker was a dominant three-sport athlete during his time at De La Salle (football, basketball and baseball). He was a captain of the 1974 DLS varsity football team, and received a scholarship to continue his football career at Michigan State. He won a Big Ten championship at MSU in 1978. He's also been a loyal supporter of De La Salle and the Christian Brothers' Dinner over the years.
Thomas Joseph “Moose” Ferenc, ‘75
Ferenc, affectionately known as “Moose,” was a three-year varsity letter winner in track and field at De La Salle. Under the leadership of world-class decathlete and DLS track coach Brian Murphy, Ferenc earned All-City and All-Catholic honors in 1974. In 1975, he went undefeated against all Class A and Class B competition; won the Detroit Catholic League championship, an MHSAA regional championship, the AAU Junior Olympic state championship and the MHSAA Class B state championship (with a DLS school-record toss of 56'O”). Ferenc went on to letter four years, as the No. 1 shot-putter, at the University of Notre Dame (1976-79). He graduated from the university with a degree in accounting. His proudest athletic achievement was becoming a DLS letterman.
Jolly founded the lacrosse program at De La Salle in 1984, and guided the Pilots to their only state championship in the sport in 1994. During his time at DLS, he has also served as athletic director, as an educator and as an assistant basketball and football coach. Additionally, he’s been the president of both the Michigan High School Lacrosse Coaches Association and the Michigan High School Coaches Association. The legendary coach is also a member of several Hall of Fames, including the Michigan High School Coaches Association, the Michigan High School Lacrosse Coaches Association, the Catholic Coaches Association, the Macomb County Coaches Hall of Fame and most recently, the National Coaches Hall of Fame. And, he’s previously received both National Coach of the Year and National Man of the Year recognition. For all his years of service to De La Salle, which began in 1974, Jolly was named the 2018 Christian Brothers’ Dinner Honoree.
“It’s pretty unique. It’s, in fact, very special,” Jolly expressed, in reference to being honored as part of this year’s Athletic Hall of Fame class. “I’ve spent more years at De La Salle than at any other venue. Many of the Hall of Fames that I’m in happen to be based on the accomplishments of coaches and players, as well as winning percentage. The selectors very rarely know you. This one at De La Salle is different. I’ve made lifelong, meaningful relationships at the school. It’s what makes this DLS Hall of Fame selection extremely special.”
1991 State Championship Bowling Team
The 1991 Class A state championship team consisted of team captain Darren Audia, ‘91, present DLS varsity bowling coach Jay Lang, ‘92, Mathew Peters, ‘92, Jeremy Dick, ‘92, Don Puchalski, ‘92, Chris Sand, ‘93, Giovanni Rastelli, ‘94, and the late Brian McGinnis, who served as the Purple and Gold’s head coach. The Pilots posted a 36-13 overall record, and also captured a Catholic League championship as part of the historic season.