Wabash’s Entrepreneurship Summit – Feb 6, 2016

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The Wabash Center for Innovation, Business & Entrepreneurship is putting together a superb program for budding entrepreneurs.  You can see the schedule for the day here and sign up here.

While this particular summit has a focus on medical technology – including a star-studded lineup of presenters – the basics apply to all of you interested in developing a new idea or business.

Don’t miss this opportunity to come back to campus and make some key connections!


BJ Hammer ’01 Takes Over At Allegheny

BJ Hammer '01

BJ Hammer ’01

I think we all knew we couldn’t keep BJ Hammer ’01 forever…after all, he’s built a resume as our defense coordinator that is truly exceptional.  With his resume, he’s ready to be a head coach at a quality program.

And that opportunity begins now as BJ is headed to Allegheny College as their new head football coach.  You can see the web story here.

There’s no doubt in my mind that BJ will take the history and tradition at Allegheny, build upon it, and restore the program.  It won’t be long before they are serious contenders in the NCAC.

But I’ll wager his impact goes far beyond that.  I’ve seen BJ’s coaching style up close and it’s about the whole man concept.  BJ knows the ins and outs of defensive play, for sure, but he’s also teaching his guys about life and what they can do to be difference makers.  That’s where his lasting impact is – on the playing fields of life.

BJ – we wish you the best.  And, for 9 of the 10 weeks each season, we’ll be rooting for you and the Gators.

The Grunge Is Back

Ski team-8625

Chris Runge ’94, Lisa Runge, Jeremy Runge, Abby Smith, Owen Runge, Coley Runge (back), JT Runge (front), and Kyle Smith

The Grunge is back for a New Years vacation in Keystone, CO along with the “Virginia Runges” (Chris, Lisa, and their boys) and the “Colorado Smunges” (Jeremy and Rick Smith and their kids).

Yes, Nana and GaBunge did take a ski lesson and proved that old people can master some new skills…let’s leave it at that.

The VA Runges flew in from Florida – the altitude change was pretty dramatic!

We had a great time but now we’re back in the saddle.


Happy Holidays!

In snowier times

In “snowier” times

Happy Holidays from the Grunge!  Whatever your faith, I hope this is a time of giving, thankfulness, joy with family and friends, and a little bit of reflection as well.  If you’re traveling, travel safe.

As I close in on my departure from Wabash, I continually reflect on what has been the same over my 16 years back at the college.  In 1999, the Class of 1991 sat right in the middle of the young alumni spectrum.  This spring they will be back for their 25th reunion! Go figure!  Time has marched on, for sure.

An unchanged part is the profound impact this good place has on the young men who call Wabash home for four years.  An unchanged part includes a faculty ever-devoted to getting those young men to push themselves in learning and in leading.  An unchanged part is a coaching staff that places an emphasis on being all you can be – in every phase of your life.  An unchanged part is a staff who are working side-by-side with the faculty in a partnership of teaching life skills.

The faces change but the experience just keeps getting better and better for these young men.

I hope you feel good about Wabash and you believe this is an institution worthy of your interest and investment.  If so, do me three simple favors:

1.  Check the Honor Roll here to make sure you’re “in” for this fiscal year (July 1, 2015 to June 30, 2016.)  There’s nothing wrong with a second gift this year, by the way.

2.  Check the Honor Roll for a classmate who is a friend.  If he’s on there, thank him with a quick note.  If he isn’t, send him to step three.

3.  Make a gift.  It’s super easy online – here is the web site.  You can also mail a gift: Wabash College, Advancement Office, PO Box 352, Crawfordsville, IN, 47933.   Every gift counts.

Thanks for all you do for our college!


These young men can change the world!



Is That Tom Perkins?

Tom Perkins and Clayton Randolph

Tom Perkins and Clayton Randolph ’16 on a commercial break

Last night Wabash played Franklin at home.  We had a great crowd and the Franklin fans traveled very well.  Chadwick was alive.

My long-time baseball buddy Tom “Perk” Perkins – we played in the Crawfordsville leagues growing up about 100 years ago – jumped in to do the radio broadcast with Clayton last night.  As you can see, Clayton thought the entire broadcast was going extremely well.

Perk does so many things for the college – he is truly cut right out of the Chick Clements mold.


Guest blog – Jotipalo Bhikkhu ’88 in Italy and England

At The Coll

Jotipalo (L) At The Colosseum

December 20, 2015

Greetings Tom,

Wishing you a Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays.  Great to see that you are still getting out to the Grand Canyon!

Noticed on the Wabash web site the stories about ancient Rome (  I’ve been visiting some of our monasteries in England and Italy, over the last seven weeks.  Return to California tomorrow.  Italy was great, the highlights for me were visiting two of the monasteries where St. Francis spent time.  My favorite was Fonte Colombo.  Attached are two photos of me outside the Colosseum.  I had my eye out for Wabash clothing while in Rome, but didn’t see any!


Jotipalo Bhikkhu (Don Sperry 88)


Friday of Finals Morning

The Chapel

I decided, since it was cold and dark this AM, that I’d take a shot at capturing the Chapel before the sun hit it.

The Chapel is the centerpiece of “this good place” – I think goodness holds court just inside that second set of doors.

Happy Holidays.

Coaching in their DNA

Rusty Nichols '63

Rusty Nichols ’63

I caught this photo of Rusty Nichols ’63 at our most recent basketball game versus Wooster.  Rusty found a space up behind the students where he could watch…and pace…and do a little mental coaching, I’ll bet.  He spent the first half up there….doing what all coaches do.


Mac Petty H’82

Rusty wasn’t the only one there.  Mac Petty H’82 also attended…as he almost always does.  He has that same seat…last row next to the camera guys.  I caught this one as the team was finishing a time out.  I am pretty sure Mac was doing a little mental motivation as well.

There is a part of me that feels like I was trespassing when I took those shots.  I thought back to the football team at Arlington…and standing to the side by myself at the Tomb of the Unknowns.  I was there…but I was occupied.

Rusty and Mac were occupied as well.  But the bottom line is pretty simple – they care…deeply.  Sure there’s the coaching DNA…for sure.  But those two guys also love Wabash and the student-athletes who represent Wabash on the court.  They have both been there…it is, and will be, forever a part of them…



Check This Out – On Facebook

Screen Shot 2015-12-11 at 11.44.56 AMYou can find the Wabash Department of Religion on Facebook right here.

Two recent posts are well worth your time.

Wabash alumnus Art Farnsley ’83 has a link there to a piece he had in the Indianapolis Star.  It’s about religious affiliations in the State of Indiana….a trend we’re probably seeing across the United States.  A little farther down the page you’ll see a piece referencing the work Of Ben Keeling ’02 for the Wall Street Journal.

We have a lot of young men who have majored in Religion – it’s a very popular major for a number of reasons.  Wondering?  Check out their page on the Wabash web site.