High School Hall Of Fame To Honor State's Best

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Arizona is now one of the few states to have a high school football hall of fame, thanks to sponsors Phoenix Metro Football Magazine and JK Communications and Construction.

According to Barry Sollenberger, co-founder of the hall of fame and publisher of Phoenix Metro Football, there are less than five high school football halls of fame in the United States.

"Now one is in Arizona," he said.

Jerry Kleven of JK Communications and Construction, helped finance duplicate plaques for the 13 players, one coach and one official who make up the inaugural class of the hall of fame.

"We are honored to be a part of this," Kleven said.

One plaque will go to the inductee and one to their high school.

Except for Peoria's Tom Greenfield, Phoenix Union's Sonny Karnofsky and Tucson's Fred Enke, all of the inductees are deceased.

The other inductees include coach Robby Robinson (Phoenix Union), Conrad Flippen (Phoenix Union), James Oldham (Phoenix Union), Norris Steverson (Mesa), Earle Nolan (Tucson), Carl and Cecil Mulleneaux (Phoenix Union), Hank Stanton (Clifford), Hall Prescott (Phoenix Union), Morris Warren (Phoenix Carver), Don Corbitt (Prescott) and official Vic Householder.

While all of the inductees played huge roles in Arizona football, Warren's influence transcends the playing field.

During the Great Depression, Warren attended Carver which was known earlier as Phoenix Colored School. In 1946, Warren became one of the first two African-American athletes to play at Arizona State.

Warren and his fellow African-American teammate, George Diggs, faced racial discrimination during ASU's days in the now-defunct Border Conference. In Texas where ASU played some games, "Jim Crow" laws prohibited African-Americans from staying in hotels with whites.

ASU refused to schedule schools where laws prohibited every player from staying in the same hotel. Warren's presence and ASU's stance helped open up major universities to African-American players.

After graduating from ASU, Warren played pro ball for the Brooklyn Dodgers of the All-American Conference.

He eventually returned to ASU to become a professor of education. At ASU, he continued to lead the fight for racial equality and often relived his playing experiences at Carver and ASU to interested students.

Warren also is a former president of the Fiesta Bowl.

After Warren's death in 2002, former teammate Wilford "Whizzer" White praised him "as a great guy, great person and real tough football player."

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