Ron Cornell, like many before and after him, is long past his prime as an outstanding high school athlete. Now at 73, he still can recall his former days in the prep world. Cornell is part of a unique class of athletes, earning nine varsity letters in three sports at Wyandotte Roosevelt from 1956 to 1958.
Back in those days, Wyandotte was a member of the Border Cities League. It was at one time known as one of the toughest leagues in the state of Michigan.
Cornell was blessed with natural athletic ability and he always landed a spot on the varsity when it came to football, basketball and baseball. He was on the same field as players who went on to play for Division I college teams. Guys like Ron Gulyas (Eastern Michigan University), Joe Carallo (Notre Dame and Los Angeles Rams) and Phil Garrison (University of Michigan).
Cornell and his wife, Janice, make their home in Lincoln Park. Ron has coached on and off for the past 40 years ranging from recreation through high school.
During his time at Roosevelt, Cornell made Honorable Mention All-State in football. He was recipient of All-State honors in basketball and averaged 20.3 points a game in his senior year. The Downriverite played for Georgetown College in Kentucky as a tight end.
On top of all that, the kid from Wyandotte was named to the American Legion Baseball All-Stars. With that background, one would think he would be considered for a spot in the Wyandotte Sports Hall of Fame. Will that happen? It is up to the powers that be and the selection committee to make that call.
Speaking about the current 2013 Bears — 7-0 heading into Friday’s game against Taylor Truman — Cornell says, “They are a team that’s a cut above. Coach (Ron) Adams has those guy’s playing at top level. They should to well in the coming playoffs.”
Suffice it to say, athletes like Cornell are gone but not forgotten. He played a major role on teams that were rated among the Michigan top ten prep teams back at that time.