October 4, 2018
Cortland C-Club To Honor Brown
CORTLAND — Eight new members will be inducted into the SUNY Cortland C-Club Hall of Fame during its 50th annual ceremony on Saturday.
Headlining the class and being inducted posthumously will be Robert Brown for soccer and baseball, Class of 1949.
Also being inducted will be Murray Banks (Class of 1970) for cross country, indoor and outdoor track and field as well as swimming and diving; Peter Graham (Class of 1974) for lacrosse and football; Jud Smith (Class of 1976) for lacrosse; Dan Revai (Class of 1979) for baseball and ice hockey; Sue Behme (Class of 1993) for soccer and lacrosse; Chuck Winters (honorary), men’s lacrosse head coach (1973-83); and Cynthia Wetmore (honorary), field hockey head coach (1998-2015) and women’s lacrosse head coach (1998-2007).
In addition to Saturday night’s official ceremony, the inductees will be introduced at halftime of the Cortland-Morrisville St. football game earlier that afternoon.
Robert Brown was a two-time soccer All-American as well as a baseball standout at Cortland who enjoyed a highly successful 33-year coaching and teaching career, including 31 years at Pine Valley Central School.
A South Dayton native, he initially enrolled at Cortland State Teachers College in 1942. He was drafted into the Combat Engineers in the U.S. Army in March 1943 and was in the Army Specialist Training Program at the University of Santa Clara, where he earned college credit in civil engineering. Brown was sent to England as a combat engineer and later served in France, Holland and Germany to finish his tour of duty.
Discharged from military service in March 1946, Brown re-enrolled at Cortland in the fall of 1946 and earned a bachelor’s degree in physical education. He also earned a master’s degree from Alfred University in 1951.
Brown was a two-time soccer All-American at Cortland (first team in 1948, second team in 1947). He was also a baseball infielder and relief pitcher in 1947 and 1948. Brown also played freshman basketball in 1942.
He signed a professional baseball contract with the Brooklyn Dodgers organization in the summer of 1948. Brown attended spring training for two weeks in March 1948 and played in 59 games with the Nashua Dodgers minor league team in 1949 (along with Cortland C-Club Hall of Famer Marion Fricano, Class of 1949). Brown also played 91 games for the Wellsville Rockets in the Pony League in 1951.
He taught physical education and coached in Whitesville for two years from 1950-52 and began a 31-year teaching and coaching career at Pine Valley Central School (formerly South Dayton High) in 1952. Brown retired from teaching and coaching in June 1984, was inducted into the Chautauqua Hall of Fame in 1986, and inducted into the Grape Belt Sports Hall of Fame and the Pine Valley Wall of Fame in 2005.
Brown coached football, basketball and baseball, taught and held the positions of athletic director and assistant principal at Pine Valley during his 31 years there. He led the football team to several league championships, including an undefeated team in 1966 that produced two professional players, and many sectional baseball titles.
The football field at Pine Valley was named Robert C. Brown Field in 1986.
Brown was also the director of Summer Swim Program at Pine Valley Central School, coordinator of the South Dayton Food Pantry and served on the South Dayton Village Board, Town of Dayton Board, and the South Dayton Free Methodist Church Board of Trustees.
He passed away on Nov. 27, 2011, at the age 87.
Brown is the father of current Randolph/Frewsburg football coach Brent Brown.
Established in 1969, the C-Club Hall of Fame recognizes Cortland alumni who competed as athletes at the College and who have since distinguished themselves in their professions and within their communities. Honorary members are recognized for their long and significant contributions to SUNY Cortland athletics. New C-Club members have been added annually and this year’s ceremony will bring the Hall of Fame roster to 263 alumni and 30 honorary members.
Nominations for next year’s C-Club Hall of Fame voting will be accepted until Jan. 15, 2019. The nomination form is available online at: http://www.cortlandreddragons.com/nominations. A person must be nominated in order to be considered for induction into the Hall of Fame.