Jan. 28, 2005
SAN DIEGO - Some 31 years after winning San Diego State's lone NCAA Division I national championship, the 1973 Aztec men's volleyball team will be presented with rings commemorating their achievement at ceremonies during halftime of the SDSU-Brigham Young basketball game on Feb. 7 at Cox Arena.
The ceremony will be preceded by a reception for the team at the Aztec Hall of Fame in the Aztec Athletics Center at 5:00 p.m. Squad member Craig Beery will give a presentation about the team and its title run in the AAC auditorium during the reception.
The 1973 volleyball team, which finished with a collegiate won-loss record of 20-5, captured the national title when it defeated top-ranked Long Beach State in the NCAA Final at the San Diego Sports Arena. The team was coached by Jack Henn, a 1968 Olympian and U.S. Volleyball Association All-American who guided the Aztecs in three decades. He was assisted by Ray Ratelle, who went on to become the men's head coach at Long Beach State, where he won a national title in 1991.
Among the familiar names on the squad were Chris Marlowe and Duncan McFarland. Marlowe was captain of the gold-medal winning 1984 U.S. Olympic team and currently is a television commentator for the Denver Nuggets. McFarland, the MVP of the NCAA championships in 1973, coached the Aztec men's volleyball team from 1979 to 1984 and has been the head women's coach at UC San Diego since 1996.
Other members of the team were All-Americans Wayne Gracey and Randy Stevenson plus Milo Bekins, Mike Coté, Steve Jensen, Craig Beery, Randy Guyer, Dave Venuti and Herb Harms. The team trainer was Larry Roberts, who went on to become head trainer at USD as well as the San Diego Clippers, San Diego Chargers and San Diego Gulls.
The gathering on Feb. 7 will mark the first time that the entire team has been reunited since winning it all in 1973. The squad was induced into the Aztec Hall of Fame in 2003, but several members were unable to attend those ceremonies. At halftime of the basketball game, the team will re-create the team photo taken on the floor of the Sports Arena after winning the national championship.
The 1973 Aztec volleyball team playing before a packed house at Peterson Gym.