1992 Hall of Honor
A prep all-American who was a record-breaking performer as a collegian, Bill Putnam ranks among the very best of Beloit’s all-time swimming greats. He not only held four separate individual Midwest Conference titles during his three varsity seasons but also was undefeated in 63 individual and relay dual-meet events in league competition over four years. While capturing championships in the 50, 100, 200 and 500-yard freestyle races, Putnam set nearly two dozen school, pool ad conference records, contributed to another pair as member of a title-winning 400-yard freestyle relay team and swam in two NCAA meets. Team captain once and co-captain twice, he helped the Buccaneer varsity to three consecutive second-place finishes in the conference, taking high-point honors among all the swimmers on each occasion. After college, Putnam shared his expertise and leadership with others, assisting at the University of Missouri-Columbia and the Springfield Swim Club before coaching a county club summer league boys’ team to 32 victories in 33 meets in seven years. Just as successful as a businessman, he is the president and chief executive officer of TAPJAC Home Centers, operating 15 retail building-materials and hardware stores in Missouri and Oklahoma.
Craig “Bruno” VanMetre was an outstanding football player who scored a Beloit College “first” by becoming a four-time all-Midwest Conference first-team selection at defensive tackle despite the fact the Buccaneers managed just 16 victories in 33 games during his career. Recipient of NCAA Division III all-American honorable mention as a junior and nation Sigma Chi Fraternity all-Sig first team honors, the 6-foot-2, 215 pound lineman started every game, had 236 unassisted and 146 assisted tackles, recovered six fumbles and twice was elected the team’s most valuable player and defensive player of the year. Coach Ed DeGeorge described him as “a soft-spoken gentleman who leads by example, is strong and quick, and dominates his area of the field.” VanMetre also excelled in swimming and, while competing on the intercollegiate level only as a freshman and sophomore, was Beloit’s high-point scorer and MVP both years. His achievements on the gridiron and in the pool and classroom earned him the College’s coveted Janssen and Dawson student-athlete awards. For the past seven years, VanMetre has worked for IMI Cornelius, a soft-drink dispenser and ice-machine manufacturing company, and serves as manager of market research and development.