2002 Hall of Honor
From the moment Larry Guzik stepped on the gridiron at Beloit College, he ignited a spark among his teammates that was a catalyst for victory. In 1964, his second season as a Buccaneer, the fleet-footed flanker from Bensenville, Ill., helped lead the team to its first winning season in eight years. Guzik’s personal achievements during the Bucs’ 5-3 campaign included 24 pass receptions for a total of 558 yards, six interceptions, and 38 points scored. As a senior, he was a co-captain, and his stellar performance carved him a place in Beloit College football history. His total of 60 receptions for 805 yards easily eclipsed the previous record of 44 set in 1961. Guzik’s consistently outstanding performances earned him a berth on the all-Midwest Conference squad, an impressive ranking of seventh among the nation’s small-college receivers and the honor of being elected Most Valuable Player. In addition to his season reception record, Guzik still holds first and second place for catches per game with 15 and 13, and the season mark for yards gained per catch at 23.3. His collegiate career was capped when—in December 1965—he signed a free-agent contract with the new Miami Dolphins of the American Football League. After spending the following summer and fall with the Dolphins, Guzik enrolled in the Drake University Law School program. Upon graduating in 1969, he settled in the Chicago area and established a successful practice. Guzik and his wife, Alice, reside in the Chicago area.
Arriving at Beloit with impressive credentials as a track star and leader at West Orange (N.J.) High School, Brad Lang won even greater acclaim as a Buccaneer runner, high hurdler, and long jumper. The outstanding achievements of this two-time Most Valuable Player and captain include five individual Midwest Conference championships, six school and two league records, a U.S. Athletic Congress long-jump title, and an NCAA Division 111 national-championship berth. It was on March 7, 1981, that Lang established a Beloit record by capturing three conference indoor crowns (in the 60-yard high hurdles, 300-yard run, and long-jump), unseating two returning champions in record-breaking performances and earning the meet’s MVP honors. He then won the conference outdoor long-jump title, but opted to skip two other events in order to participate in Beloit’s Commencement. Later, in the NCAA nationals, Lang finished eighth in the long-jump and reached the semifinals in the 110-high hurdles. A recipient of Beloit’s Janssen and Dawson awards for academic, athletic, and leadership excellence, he did post-graduate work at Purdue University. Lang—who is a Delta Air Lines first officer on Boeing 757s and 767s, also participates in competitive aerobatics (winning state and national championships), and serving as a member of the U.S. Advanced Aerobatic Team.
It was clear soon after John “Roundy” Tharp hit the Beloit College hardcourt that his reputation as a Buccaneer would rival the legend he created at Sheboygan (Wis.) North High School. His success began midway through his freshman year, when he became the Bucs’ starting point guard. Once this happened, his momentum was in full swing and Tharp was unstoppable. In 1989, he earned second-team all-Midwest Conference recognition as Beloit won the league championship. By his senior year, he was a two-time team captain, had been elected as the team’s Most Valuable Player, and had earned first team all-conference honors. During the 1991 season, Tharp continued his dominance on the court and proceeded to set Beloit records with 181 single-season assists and 502 career assists (setting a National NCAA Division 111 Record). His quick rebounding and agility netted him a career total of 822 points and 250 rebounds. Upon graduation, Tharp maintained a presence on the Beloit College basketball court; from 1991-1994, he was an assistant to Coach Bill Knapton and helped guide the Buccaneers to a 50-21 record and a Midwest Conference championship. In 1994, Tharp was hired as head coach at Lawrence University in Appleton, Wis. As his eighth season as the Viking leader started—and with a league title to his credit—he ranked third on the school’s all-time win list with 95 victories. John, his wife, Jennifer, and their three children make their home in Appleton, Wisconsin.