IFL Honors 2016 Hall of Fame Class

IFL Honors 2016 Hall of Fame Class

Originally Posted on June 18,2016

On Thursday, Sioux Falls Storm LB Mark Blackburn, Tri-Cities Fever DB Lionell Singleton and Colorado Crush Owner Tom Wigley were announced as the newest members of the IFL Hall of Fame.

Several members from all around the IFL have since offered their appreciation for the Class for 2016.

MARK BLACKBURN:

"Every owner, coach and player's goal is to come across a leader like Mark. On and off the field, Mark has that burning desire to lead and get the best out of people. Mark was the catalyst to our organization from 2004-2010. His gaudy numbers are a small reflection of what he did for our organization."

Todd Tryon - Sioux Falls Storm Owner

"Many great players have played for the Sioux Falls Storm, but Mark Blackburn would be the catalyst and leader of all the players to wear a Storm uniform.  Without hesitation one of the greatest leaders that I have ever coached.  Mark was able to lead by example, but still be able to have everyone's attention when he addressed the team.  Mark knew when he needed to bring the team together and regain their focus.  There was never a question if Mark left everything on the field and he is one of the main reasons that the Sioux Falls Storm has accomplished all the success over the last 15 years.  Was truly a pleasure to have the opportunity to coach Mark."

Kurtiss Riggs - Sioux Falls Storm Head Coach

"Blackburn was one of those guys who made the play when you needed it the most. At the 2008 All-Star game I learned a lot from him. His leadership and ability to make others around him better, is what makes him more than worthy of being a Hall of Fame. Blackburn is one of the best linebackers I have ever played against.  

Chris Dixon - Former Sioux Falls Storm QB and 2015 IFL Hall of Fame Inductee

"Mark Blackburn was the heart and soul of illustrious Storm teams that set extremely high standards for dominance and success. His unmatched leadership was evidenced in both his passionate play and his unwavering off field character.  Mark is the very best of what exemplifies an IFL Hall of Fame recipient."

Rich Roste - Sioux Falls Storm Radio Broadcaster and 2014 IFL Hall of Fame Inductee

 

LIONELL SINGLETON:

"Lionell is one of those 'special' players that every so often a franchise is lucky enough to have walk through their doors.  His records on the field speak for themselves, but what he brings goes way beyond the football field. He is a patient and quiet man that speaks through his actions.  His dedication to youth and improving their lives in our community has been an inspiration to his teammates, others and me in our community. I'm very proud of all that he has accomplished and still strives to accomplish"

Teri Carr - Tri-Cities Fever Owner/GM and 2016 IFL Hall of Fame Finalist

"Lionel Singleton is one the the most instinctive defensive players I have ever coached. A leader, community advocate and high character person that every coach dreams of having on their team. Very well deserved not only by Lionell Singleton but everybody in the Tri Cities Organization. We had some great teams during Lionell's career in Tri Cities and he was an important part of that."

Adam Shackleford - Former Tri-Cities Fever Head Coach and current Spokane Empire Head Coach

"Lionell was a standout person who proved his greatness on the field. He was a guy I counted on as his defensive coordinator to be a leader and the QB of the defense. Lionell is a measuring stick I use today to in scouting and recruiting players."

Ryan Lingenfelder - Tri-Cities Fever Head Coach

 

TOM WIGLEY:

"Tom's limitless loyalty and service to the Indoor Football League is unrivaled.  Since taking over the Ice [Crush] in 2010, the team has been a consistent force. Usually a calming influence throughout the league, Tom has all the traits that you look for in an owner and he will be sorely missed. The IFL family is overjoyed to forever honor his great contributions as a member of the Hall of Fame."

Michael Allshouse - IFL Commissioner

"First and foremost Tom is more than a business partner, I consider him a friend.  He is a kind and thoughtful person and that extends beyond personal relationships. He has always had the intentions of doing the right thing with honesty, integrity and occasionally inserting his wit into situations to lighten the mood.  In any business today that is hard to come by, which is why having him as the owner of one of my closest rivals has been such a blessing for Tri-Cities.  I know I can count on Tom.   Many will miss Tom, but I can't think of a better way to honor my friend and our dedicated partner."

Teri Carr - Tri-Cities Fever Owner/GM and 2016 IFL Hall of Fame Finalist

"I want to thank Tom Wigley for the opportunities he has granted me in letting me GM and head coach. He is not only a great owner but he is also a great friend. 

Heron O'Neal  - Colorado Crush Head Coach and General Manager 

"Tom was a great guy and very amiable and someone you could work with on issues.  He tended to be quiet during discussions but when he had the opportunity to contribute, everyone listened to his thoughts and valued them.  I always admired the fact that Tom owned this team for one reason only, because he enjoyed the sport, the fans, the players and the IFL.  Tom wasn't in it for any other reason than his love for the Crush which I have always felt made him unique in this league."

Charlie Bosselman – Nebraska Danger Owner