Rob Gronkowski, Brooks Orpik headline ’24 Greater Buffalo Sports Hall of Fame class

Pittsburgh Penguins’ Brooks Orpik (44) warms up before an NHL hockey game against the Boston Bruins in Pittsburgh Monday, Jan. 10, 2011. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — Two athletes who grew up in Amherst and won championships playing for Boston teams are the headline names in the 34th induction class for the Greater Buffalo Sports Hall of Fame.

Rob Gronkowski, the former Williamsville North tight end who went on to win three Super Bowls with the New England Patriots and another with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, along with Brooks Orpik, a Nichols School alumnus who won the Stanley Cup twice with the Boston Bruins will be inducted Nov. 12 at the GBSHOF dinner.

The St. Bonaventure men’s basketball teams from 1967-1970 that twice finished the season ranked No. 3 in the country also will be honored, along with the 12-member class that brings the total to 400 inductees since 1991.

Introducing Buffalo Sports HOF class of 2023

Along with Gronkowski and Orpik, here is the rest of this year’s class:

Kevin Cadle (veteran) – High school basketball star, legendary international and Olympic basketball coach, and sports broadcaster.

Vic Carucci – Nationally recognized reporter, with 40 plus years covering the NFL.

Norm Foster (veteran) – Legendary high school coach from Iroquois High School and Amherst High School.

Warren Gelman – Three-sport high school athlete and longtime WNY youth hockey administrator.

Rick Lancelloti – Minor League Baseball standout with Bisons, and premier youth baseball instructor in WNY.

Bridget Niland – Standout track athlete and college sports administrator.

Cecelie Owens – Holder of numerous Buffalo State hoops records – founder of Goals. Integrity. Respect. Leadership. Sports. (G.I.R.L.S.) Foundation

Walt Stefani – Volleyball legend in WNY as player, coach and administrator.

Ed Van Tine (veteran) – Trailblazer, known as the “Godfather of lacrosse in Western New York.”

Paul Wieland (veteran) – Groundbreaking communications professional for the Buffalo Sabres.


Jonah Bronstein joined the WIVB squad in 2022 as a digital sports reporter. The Buffalonian has covered the Bills, Sabres, Bandits, Bisons, colleges, high schools and other notable sporting events in Western New York since 2005, for publications including The Associated Press, The Buffalo News, and Niagara Gazette. Read more of his work here.

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