Tom Kaczkowski
Tom Kaczkowski

 

Tom Kaczkowski (1973)

Tom Kaczkowski is going into the Champaign Hall of Fame for his feats in track and football, of which there were many. Kaczkowski, who set a school record in the 800 meters (1:55.1 seconds) was a three-time state qualifier in track and a three-time Big 12 champ (880, mile, and mile relay). "I'd like to think I was better in football, but it seems like most of my honors came in track," Kaczkowski said. Kaczkowski earned All-Big 12 recognition at defensive back as a senior, a season which saw Central snap Danville's 33-game winning streak. Knee surgery kept Kaczkowski from furthering his football career beyond Central, so he accepted a track scholarship from the University of Illinois. Before undergoing another of five knee operations as a junior in 1976, he enjoyed a spectacular sophomore season, running a leg on a foursome that won the Drake and Kansas relays. That relay team had the fastest college time in the world. He received the George Huff certificate of award for academic and athletic excellence. Following graduation in 1978, Kaczkowski spent four years as head track coach and a football assistant at West Chicago High, two years as a football assistant at DePauw University and two more as an Ohio Northern aide. He then became head football coach at Ohio Northern.