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WSIU's Listening Project: Rich Herrin & Benton Rangers

From 1960 until 1985 Rich Herrin and the Benton Rangers forged high school basketball history with more than 500 wins, four undefeated seasons and 21 regional tournament titles.  Coach Herrin and four of his former players - Rich Yunkus, Terry Thomas, Hugh Frailey, and Bill Smith - sat down recently to reminisce for this week's edition of WSIU's Listening Project.

Credit Pearl Franz / WSIU
Former Benton High School players Terry Thomas, Bill Smith and Rich Yunkus take part in the Listening Project at Benton Library

Their conversation was recorded as part of the 100th Anniversary of the Benton Public Library.

More Stories:

On getting his players scholarships and jobs...

Hugh Frailey talks about how Coach Herrin always helped his player with scholarships and jobs.

  On the community's support of the game...

Rich Yunkus talks about how the Benton community embraced and supported the team.

WSIU's Listening Project chronicles the stories, experiences, and history of the people who call this region home.  You can hear more stories from the Benton Listening Project here.


Jeff Williams is the Associate Director for Radio and Station Manager for WSIU Radio. Jeff is a native of southern Illinois and has been in broadcasting for 30 years. After graduating with a degree in Radio-Television from Southern Illinois University Carbondale, he worked in radio and television news in Illinois, Indiana, West Virginia and Washington, D.C. before returning to WSIU Radio in 1997, as Morning Edition anchor/reporter. Jeff served as News Director from 2001 to 2015. He assumed Station Manager duties in 2004. WSIU is operated by Southern Illinois University Carbondale. It signed on the air in September 1958.
Born in Newport, Rhode Island to a military family, Kevin Boucher traveled the country and the world at a young age before his family settled in Murphysboro, Illinois in 1976. He earned a Bachelor's degree in Radio-Television at Southern Illinois University (SIU) in Carbondale and worked in commercial radio before becoming the Traffic Manager at WSIU Public Television. Boucher has since earned a Master's degree in Professional Media & Media Management Studies from SIU's College of Mass Communication & Media Arts. He is an outdoor enthusiast who enjoys gardening and exploring the flora and fauna of the Shawnee National Forest and other beautiful natural areas across southern Illinois. Kevin is embarking on a new path with WSIU as the Community Engagement Producer for WSIU Radio. Look for Kevin's work on air and on line.
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