M.E. “Bus” Whitehead – Scottsbluff.

Athlete. One of the few big men in the state in his day at 6’8’, Bus Whitehead graduated from Scottsbluff High School in 1945.  An outstanding senior year contributed to a trip to Lincoln for the Class A State Basketball Championship.  One of the few losses for the season was in the finals when Scottsbluff lost to Creighton Prep.  Actively recruited by a number of major universities, he selected the University of Nebraska.   His improvement as a college player was beyond expectations: during both his junior and senior years he was selected to the All Big 7 team.  As a senior, he was the only unanimous selection to the All Big 7 team. In both of his last two years Nebraska was a Conference Co-Champion.  Bus graduated from Nebraska holding seven Nebraska scoring records and was selected as a District 5 All American, and later was selected to the All-Time University of Nebraska Basketball Team. Played in College All-Star East –West game at Madison Square Garden. Outstanding player for the Phillips 66 Oilers in the National Industrial League. Nebraska Basketball Hall of Fame, Lincoln Journal Star Hall of Fame, and the Scottsbluff Hall of Fame.  Longtime Lincoln resident Bus and his wife Ruth have three children and five grandchildren. 

Les “Beanie” Witte – Lincoln High

Athlete.  One of two native Nebraskans to be named All-American in basketball, Les “Beanie” Witte was an all around athlete at Lincoln High.  Les was a teammate of Bernie Masterson on the 23-0-2 Links football teams from 1927-29.  He starred on the 1929 and 1930 basketball teams that went 40-10 winning the 1920 state tournament.  Recruited by his older brother,  “Dutch” Witte, who was coaching at Wyoming, he immediately became a star, being named All-American three years in a row — 1932, 1933 and 1934.  In the pre-NCAA Tournament days, Wyoming was selected as the 1934 national champions by the Helms Athletic Foundation, the only collegiate voting poll of the era.

Larry Wachholtz – North Platte

Athlete. Larry was a three-sport athlete for the North Platte Bulldogs  (Class of 1963) and earned honors in all three.  He played offensive and defensive back for two years, then switched to quarterback his senior year while continuing to play defensive back.  When the Bulldogs won the state championship in 1962, Larry was a consensus all-state selection and tapped to play in the Shrine Bowl as halfback on offense and defensive back.  His Shrine Bowl teammates elected him co-captain of the North team.  In basketball he was named all-conference his junior and senior years and was the team’s leading scorer.  North Platte made it to the state tournament his senior year and lost in the quarterfinals, but Larry was selected on the Class A all-tournament team by the Scottsbluff, Kearney, Lincoln, and Omaha papers.  The Scottsbluff Star-Herald also placed him on its Class A All-State team.  The pole vault was his event in track where he tied for fourth in the state meet as a junior and tied for first his senior year.  In the district meet his senior year he broke a 26-year-old school record.  After receiving offers from 15 colleges, Larry chose UN-L.  Those were the days when freshman couldn’t play varsity ball so it wasn’t until his sophomore year that he earned his starting position on the Big Red.  Playing at defensive safety he also did punt returns and kicked PATs and field goals.  His junior year he was selected first-team All-Big 8 and second-team All-American as a defensive back.  Larry racked up a total of 452 yards on returns, which led the Big 8 and the nation until the last game where he lost the national title by seven yards. He made 36 of 39 PATs and 3 of 5 field goals for 45 total points.   He was chosen a co-captain his senior year and again led the Big 8 in punt return yards.  He was again All-Big 8, and this time first-team All-American. He won the Tom Novak Award presented to the outstanding senior.  He finished his Husker career with 788 punt return yards, eight field goals, and 11 pass interceptions including seven in one year. In 1967 he was named by the Omaha World-Herald to its All-Time Outstanding Football Team. In 1982 he was inducted into the Nebraska Football Hall of Fame.