The Times West Virginian

Mickey Furfari

October 24, 2013

FURFARI COLUMN: Blaney adds another notch to his laurel list

MORGANTOWN — Dale Blaney, who was inducted into the West Virginia University Sports Hall of Fame last month as a basketball great, has added another national feat to his growing list of sprint car racing achievements.

The Hartford, Ohio, native finished third in the All-Star Car Circuit of Champions finale at the Speedway in Rossburg, Ohio, on Oct. 12. His finish locked up the 2013 ASCOC national point championship and the 2013 ASCOC regional point title.

This is Blaney’s fourth such championship – 1995, 1996, 2008 and now 2013.

The All-Star Circuit Champion Series dates back to 1980. Blaney did not enter the competition until about 1991.

Blaney had set an all-time record for most victories in that sport on Sept. 14 when notching the 99th win as a car racer in Freemont, Ohio.

He comes from an auto racing family.

Dale’s father, Lou, was inducted into the National Sprint Car Racing Hall of Fame last summer. His brother, Dave, currently is enjoying success on the NASCAR circuit after numerous wins in sprint car competition.

Dale Blaney, who’s 49 years old, was an outstanding guard on WVU basketball teams from 1983-86. The four-year standout was a leading contributor to records of 23-8, 20-7, 20-9, and 22-11.

Blaney helped the Mountaineers to appearances in three NCAA Tournaments and one National Invitation Tournament. Gale Catlett was his coach.

A rare two-year team captain, Blaney ranks 18th among all men’s basketball scorers in school history with a collection of 1,522 points.

Blaney, a totally complete performer on the hardwood, ranks 16th all-time in WVU career assists (331), 10th in career double-figure games (89), 10th in career free throws made (370), and 10th in career free-throw percentage (.813).

Blaney turned down what seemed like a sure-shot to play in the National Basketball Association in favor of a career in sprint car racing.

o o o o o o

In case you’re interested, Kansas State has been installed by the oddsmakers as a 10½-point favorite over West Virginia on Saturday at Manhattan, Kansas.

The Wildcats (2-4, 0-3 Big 12) will be trying to end a three-game losing streak. They were idle last week.

The Mountaineers (3-4, 1-3 Big 12) have lost two in a row to Baylor and Texas Tech since upsetting Oklahoma State 30-21.

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Mickey Furfari
  • FURFARI COLUMN: Ex-Mountaineer track star dies; WVU athlete arrests may be concern

    I’ve learned belatedly that James Gordon “Jim” Dial, an outstanding men’s track and field sprinter at West Virginia University during the late 1940s, has died.
    He was a native of Huntington who earned All-State first team status. The Huntington High star led all scorers in the state Track Championship meets in both 1946 and ’47.

    July 18, 2014

  • FURFARI COLUMN: Jedd Gyorko running and taking batting practice now

    A report on the internet at this week’s start indicated that Morgantown’s Jedd Gyorko might be ready finally to rejoin the San Diego Padre’s starting lineup.
    He has been on the Major League’s disabled list since June 3. Problems with his feet was given as the reason Gyorko was unable to keep playing.

    July 16, 2014

  • FURFARI COLUMN: WVU hopes to boost season-ticket sales

    West Virginia University’s season-ticket sales for football are the lowest in nine years just two months before this season’s first home game.
    That will be on Saturday, Sept. 6, against Towson State. The Big 12 portion of the schedule follows.

    July 10, 2014

  • FURFARI COLUMN: San Diego Padres’ Gyorko remains on disabled list

    Stringing together some odds and ends that may interest you:
    • Jedd Gyorko still is not active with the San Diego Padres. The former West Virginia University standout has been on the baseball’s disabled list for just over a month and hopes to return soon.

    July 9, 2014

  • FURFARI COLUMN: It had to feel like ‘Ol’ Home Week’ for the Tricketts

    It might have felt like a bit of “Ol’ Home Week’ to West Virginia University starting quarterback Clint Trickett.
    His parents, Rick and Tara Trickett, were in the Morgantown area and stopped by to spend some time with Clint. They still live in Tallahassee, Florida.

    July 3, 2014

  • FURFARI COLUMN: WVU football season-ticket sales approximately 26,000

    Stringing together some odds and ends about sports that may be of interest to you:
    • West Virginia University season-ticket sales for the 2014 football campaign have reached approximately 26,000. That’s some 2,000 since the count of 24,000 when the renewal deadline was reached.

    June 27, 2014

  • FURFARI COLUMN: USA Today has WVU 78th in football countdown from No. 128 to No. 1

    Like Las Vegas oddsmakers, USA Today’s sports writer Paul Myerberg doesn’t rank West Virginia highly in that newspaper’s early college football predictions in a copyrighted piece.
    In one of its thorough pieces, USA Today analyzed West Virginia in its No. 78 ranking among 128 college teams. That’s what is called a countdown from No. 128 to No. 1.

    June 24, 2014

  • FURFARI COLUMN: Las Vegas oddsmakers not kind to WVU in early listings

    Not long ago, I guessed that the West Virginia University football team will go 6-6 during the 2014 football season.
    That was based strictly on a hunch. It would show at least some improvement over last year’s pitiful 4-8 finish.

    June 22, 2014

  • FURFARI COLUMN: Five different items about a variety of sports

    Stringing together some odds and ends which may be of interest to you:
    • In a continuing federal court case out West, an economist recently testified that student athletes could receive as much as $1 million were he or she given a half share of a major college’s revenue from network game broadcasts over a four year period.

    June 18, 2014

  • FURFARI COLUMN: Noll was the most successful football coach I ever knew

    Charles Henry “Chuck” Noll was without question the most successful football coach at any level that I’ve ever known in my writing career.
    Noll, who died in his sleep at 82 last Friday night, served 23 enjoyable – and most memorable – years as mentor of the Pittsburgh Steelers.

    June 17, 2014

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