Ralph “Rip” Barrett arrived in Chula Vista courtesy of the US Navy where his father was a commander. Rip attend Chula Vista High School (1961-63) and he played varsity basket-ball and varsity tennis. When Castle Park High School opened in 1963, Rip transferred as a senior and was involved in the development of the school’s student government, selection of the school’s colors, nickname, mascot and other traditions.
During 1963-64, every event Castle Park High School participated in was as a first year school, leading many parents and fans to expect much effort but very little in the way of accomplishments; however, that was not to be the fate of the boys’ basketball team. Rip averaged 17.9 points per game and led San Diego prep basketball players with a total of 540 points. He was selected Castle Park’s MVP, Metro League’s MVP and First Team All-Conference while leading the first year Trojan basketball team to a league championship for the first time in San Diego County history. He was also selected for a Los Angeles Her-ald Examiner Athlete with Honors Award.
Rip also found time to play varsity tennis and was selected MVP. He graduated fifth in the Class of 1964 with a 3.7 GPA, served as Associated Student Body Vice President and Key Club President.
Rip attended Southwestern College from 1964-65 and continued his basketball career play-ing for Hall of Fame Coach George “Bud” Milke. Rip was the team’s leading scorer (18.6 PPG) and MVP, and he was selected First Team All Pacific Southwest Conference as its second leading scorer. Rip speaks fondly of his playing days for Southwestern. “I was coached by one of the finest coaches to come from the San Diego area, Coach Milke. His teaching of fundamentals of the game and instillation of confidence in his players was in-valuable. He was flexible and tailored his offense and defense to his available talent. He is a major reason I was able to succeed at all levels. Playing basketball at SWC allowed me to prove to four-year universities that I was capable of performing at the next level and en-abled me to achieve more scholarship offers and accept a scholarship to SDSU.”
Rip transferred to San Diego State University from 1965-69 where he majored in biology and minored in chemistry, graduating with High Honors and Distinction. In 1968-69, he was selected to the Second Team All-Conference California Collegiate Athletic Conference. SDSU won the Conference Championship and was nationally ranked from 1966-1969; the team finished in 3rd place in the NCAA Western Regional Tournament in 1968.
Upon graduation from SDSU in 1969, Rip attended the University of California, Davis School of Veterinary Medicine, graduating third in his class of 82 with a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree in June 1973. He completed postgraduate degrees at Cornell University School of Veteri-nary Medicine, earning his Certificate of Internship in 1974 and his Certificate of Residency in Veterinary Internal Medicine in 1976. From 1976-77, Rip taught Veterinary Internal Medicine at Washington State University School of Veterinary Medicine. He was selected as a Diplomat of the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine in June 1979.
In 1977, Rip co-founded the second private specialty veterinary practice in the western United States, the Sacramento Animal Medical Group (SAMG). He trained over 140 interns and resi-dents who have become leaders in the veterinary profession in clinical practice, research and teaching. He sold SAMG in 1999 and became Chief of Medicine and Head of Quality Control for 72 small animal veterinary hospitals with National Petcare Centers. During his career, he has published 23 peer reviewed scientific journal and textbook chapters and lectured nationally and internationally.
Rip has been married to his wife Rhonda for 46 years, and they have lived in Fair Oaks, CA since 1977. They have two children, Allison and Jeffrey. Allison is a credentialed elementary teacher who, with her husband Casey Lyon, owns a landscape construction business in the Mon-terey/Carmel area. They have two children, River and Cambria. Jeffrey is an architect in the San Francisco bay area, and he and his wife Lenka have two children, Artessa and Natasha.
Rip retired in 2009 and busies himself with travel, golf, fishing, bird dog training, gardening and bird hunting with “the smartest and sweetest Labrador Retriever in the world, Brody.”
For his outstanding contributions as a student-athlete and as an educator in veterinary medicine, Southwestern College Athletic Hall of Fame is honored to induct Dr. Rip Barrett as a member of the Class of 2015.
Valerie Goodwin-Colbert graduated from high school in 1975 in Forgan, Oklahoma. She was a two-sport athlete participating in basketball and track and field. In her senior year, her basketball team won the Oklahoma State Basketball Championship, and she was selected for the All-State Basketball Team. She was also a high jumper for the track team and won four straight State High Jump Championships. Her team won the State Track Championship in 1972. Because of her many athletic accomplishments, in 1975 she was named the Oklahoma’s Female Athlete of the Year.
Valerie attended Wayland Baptist University in Plainview, Texas, from 1975 to 1979. She con-centrated on basketball participating in four NCAA National Championships where she was se-lected to the All-Regional Team in 1978 and led the NCAA in free throw percentage with a 97%. In her senior year, she was elected Student Body President and graduated with a BS in Physical Education, Recreation and Health.
After graduating from college, Valerie was the second selection in the first women’s professional basketball league draft. She played for the Dallas Diamonds from 1979 to 1980. During this time, she also attended Stephen F. Austin State University in Nacogdoches,Texas and received her ME with a Physical Education specialization in 1981. Over a 10-year period, Valerie coached women’s basketball at various colleges, including Stephen F. Austin State University, Oklahoma State University, Missouri State University and the University of Oklahoma. And in 1984 she was named one of Springfield, Missouri’s Distinguished Women after serving on the YMCA Board of Directors from 1983-1987 and as spokesperson for the Ronald McDonald House for terminally ill children.
In 1990, Valerie was hired at Southwestern College as a Professor of Physical Education and as Head Women’s Basketball Coach. Her teams won 12 Pacific Coast Conference Championships (PCC) and reached the State Regional Final twice, and she was honored as PCC Coach of the Year for six seasons. Her student athletes also shared in her success and received scholarships to various four-year schools including University of San Diego, San Diego State University, Baker University (Kansas), CSU Northridge, UC Riverside and Norfolk University (Virginia). Always a leader, Valerie also served on the PCC Women’s Coaches Basketball Association and was elected the State President twice and the National Representative to the Association Board for six years.
From 1995-2000, she traveled as a coach/player for the Christian sponsored Basketball Interna-tional Sports and Cultural Exchange. As their ambassador, her duties in Mexico ranged from conducting clinics to coaching teams. In Oklahoma, she was selected to the All-Decade High School Basketball Team, and since 2009, she worked for the John Brockington Foundation of San Diego promoting and educating the community about organ donations.
In 2007-2009 Valerie was elected Southwestern College’s Academic Senate President and until her retirement served on multiple college committees: Co-Chair of the Curriculum Committee, Co-Chair of the Student Services Committee, Institutional Facilities Master Plan Committee and many more. She also was Tenure Review Coordinator and Chair of the Exercise Science De-partment for two terms. In addition to her participation on campus, she also authored a book and wrote several articles promoting the female student-athlete and her well being.
Valerie’s late husband, Jim Colbert, was a beloved and outstanding health professor at San Diego City College and assistant football coach who coached at SWC for several seasons. Jim loved teaching, martial arts, salsa dancing, and supporting Valerie 100% in all her endeavors.
Valerie’s best memories of Southwestern College are of the relationships she made over her 25 years, “…the laughter, tears and kinship with my colleagues as well as the unique, diverse chal-lenges of students’ and student-athletes’ lives that will forever be a part of me.”
For your dedication and for the many contributions to the college, your student-athletes, and to the School of Health, Exercise Science, Athletics and Applied Technology, it is an honor to wel-come Valerie Goodwin-Colbert into the Southwestern College Athletic Hall of Fame as a valued member of the Class of 2015.
Nicole Meyer-Sandez graduated from Mar Vista High School in 1989 where she participated as a three-sport athlete in volleyball, basketball and softball, winning numerous accolades and awards from her high school and the Metro League. A skilled athlete and a fierce competitor, she was team MVP and All-League in basketball and softball and was named Senior Female of the Year. A good student as well, she was named to the All Academic Team in Softball. As a result, Nicole was inducted into Mar Vista High School Hall of Champions.
Nicole attended Southwestern College from 1991-1993 but decided to concentrate on softball and play for the Pacific Coast Conference Coach of the Year Pam Stone. She was a dynamic pitcher, shortstop and power hitter who sparked her team to a second place finish battling peren-nial State Champion Palomar. For her outstanding play, she was selected to both the 1991 and 1992 Pacific Coast All Conference Teams. Head Coach Pam Stone recalls: “Nicky was, and is, a rare student-athlete and role model. Her attributes of athleticism, intelligence, and character made her superior on and off the field. Today her work ethic is still contagious, and her leader-ship shines in all she does. Nick has compassion and vitality for people, and it showed every day she came to the field and still shines in her teaching and coaching. I feel so blessed that our paths crossed
Women’s Softball and am honored to be called her coach. I am looking forward to the amazing things she accomplishes in her future.”
After playing at Southwestern, Nicole played on the Mexican National team and competed one year at San Diego State University. Between the ages of 16 to 41 years old, she participated in over 40 national championships in Mexico in various age categories including the open division, and earned numerous MVP and Batting Champion Awards. She played in two international tour-naments for team Mexico: the 1990 ISF World Championship and in 1992 the Central American Games.
Nicole returned to San Diego State University to complete her education, graduating in 1995 with a BA in Mathematical Sciences. Shortly after, she was hired to teach math in the Sweetwa-ter District where currently she is assigned at Otay Ranch High School. In the following years, Nicole coached high school for five years, assisting at Coronado and Otay Ranch. She then re-turned to Southwestern College and coached for the Jags under Head Coach Bob Aguilar. She also continued to play in Mexico after she married and had two children. In 2010, although she was 39 years old, she was asked again to play on the Mexican National Team, and after accept-ing their invitation, played at the international level for the next two years competing in the 2011 Central American Games and the Pam American Games held in Mexico. In recognition for her many contributions, at her last Open National in Mexico, the President of the Mexican Softball Federation awarded Nicole her Hall of Fame ring during opening ceremonies.
Since 2008, Nicole has been actively involved at Bonita Valley Girls ASA as a coach, both for the recreational season and the all-star season. She is also a member of the board, fundraises for the league and assists in softball clinics. Nicole says: “My goal is to help young girls to develop a love for the game and their skills, but also to teach them about the importance of teamwork, leadership, commitment so they develop into independent strong young women.”
Nicole is married to Eddie Sandez and they have two active children, son, Darian Sandez, and daughter, Daniela Sandez. Her mother, Dolores Meyer, and her family have always supported Nicole in her pursuit for athletic and academic achievement.
Nicole remembers: “By far the best memory I have of SWC is the friendships built with my teammates. The bond with these other remarkable women is irreplaceable. I also fondly remem-ber in the spring of 1991 participating in the Cerritos Tournament playing three back-to-back games and bringing home the championship.”
The Southwestern College Athletic Hall of Fame is honored to induct Nicole Meyer-Sandez into the Class of 2015 for her outstanding contributions as a student-athlete, educator and coach.
Maribeth Meyers graduated from Hilltop High School in 1976, a talented, multi-sport athlete who participated in basketball and softball. She lettered in both sports, helping each team win the Metro League Championship for three consecutive years, the CIF Basketball Championship in 1975 and the CIF Softball Championship in 1976. She was named to the Metro All-League Team and the All-CIF Teams in both sports. In 1976, she was selected by Prep Magazine as one of the top 100 California high school basketball players.
In 1977, Maribeth came to Southwestern College and played on the Women’s Basketball Team coached by Southwestern College Hall of Fame Head Coach June Scopinich. A fierce competi-tor, Maribeth was a starter and point guard both years and a statistical leader of the team with a 40% field goal shooting percentage; 11.8 points per game; 177 passes intercepted; and 203 as-sists. One of the team’s co-captains, Maribeth was the MVP and was named to the Second Team All-Mission Conference her first year and First Team All-Mission Conference as a sophomore. She and the team went on to become Mission Conference Champions and participate in the Cali-fornia Community College Regional Basketball Tournament.
Maribeth made the San Diego State University’s Women’s Basketball Team but decided to at-tend and play at CSU Haywood after receiving a full scholarship. There she averaged 14.9 points per game and was selected to the All-Conference Team. She played softball and helped her team win the Conference Championship and second place in the Regional Tournament. She was also selected to the All-Conference and All-Regional Teams. She graduated in 1981 with a BS De-gree in Kinesiology and received her California Teaching Credential, K-12.
In 1982, Maribeth returned to San Diego. Her father died unexpectedly and she helped her mother stabilize the family business. In 1983, she coached the Southwestern College’s Women’s Basketball Team while managing the business full time. After selling the jewelry store she earned her Graduate Gemologist Diploma from the Gemological Institute of America. She worked at their world headquarters in Carlsbad for seven years. It was a fine fit utilizing her ex-periences both in education and the jewelry business. She has always been thankful to her par-ents who had always encouraged and enabled her to participate in athletics.
Maribeth’s best memory at Southwestern College was her first year on the basketball team. It was pre-season and the team traveled up to Fullerton Community College to participate in their basketball tournament.
“Most of the players on the team were former foes from the Metro League and didn’t care for each other very much. A terrific camaraderie developed from traveling and playing together and we excelled as the season progressed. We succeeded as a team by knowing and playing to each teammate’s strengths. I so enjoyed this time in my life and directly benefitted from the lessons learned and carried forward throughout my life.”
Congratulations Maribeth Meyers for your unparalleled achievements as a student athlete. It is with distinct honor to induct you into the Southwestern College Athletic Hall of Fame, Class of 2015.
Richard “Dick” Robinson attended Kearney Junior-Senior High School and graduated in 1949. He participated in football and wrestling, but his success came in wrestling when he won the San Diego County Wrestling Championship in 1945 in the 95-pound division. He continued to win many CIF and AAU wrestling medals throughout his high school career.
Upon graduation from Kearney, Dick attended San Diego State University from 1949-53, earned his degree in art, and continued his wrestling success when he twice won the Pacific Coast Inter-collegiate Champion Wrestling and Outstanding Boxer Award.
From 1958-62, Dick was a passionate art teacher and the wrestling coach at Chula Vista High School. Validating his excellence in the classroom and his positive impact on his students, he received the California Teacher of the Year Award in 1958.
From 1962-1992, Dick was a Professor of Visual Arts at Southwestern College. He also served as the Apaches’ first Head Wrestling Coach from 1963-66. William “Bill” Virchis (Hall of Fame, Class of 2008) was a member of Coach Robinson’s wrestling team, and he has fond memories of his years under Coach’s tutelage. “I was a 79-pound kid when I first met Coach, and he made me feel like Hercules.
He was tough and disciplined. Tough Love was his middle name. Being a great athlete himself, he knew the pathway to a greater vision for all who met him. I owe him a big part of my heart because his inspiration and his coaching technique I still use to this day as a coach at Otay Ranch High School.”
An example of Coach Robinson’s “Tough Love” is found in this story relayed by Coach Virchis. “We were on our way to Holtville for a wrestling tournament, and one of our wrestlers put a cigarette in his mouth. Coach stopped the van in Plaster City and made us all run to Holtville. It was 110 degrees in the shade. Needless to say, we won the tournament. The wrestler never smoked again, and all of us will never forget Imperial Valley as long as we live.”
Dick also was an acclaimed artist and instructor at Southwestern for 30 years, presenting many one-man exhibitions and winning several major prizes in painting and sculpture. He also won many running competitions, including the Heart of San Diego Marathon Masters Championship in 1980. His other competitive age-group triathlon championships include 10 National Champi-onships, seven World Championships (three from the Iron Man competition), and four ITU titles. In 2006, he won his age group title in the World Duathlon Championships. Locally, Dick was selected as the San Diego Hall of Champions Star of the Month for September 2006. His trophy wall includes 190 trophies and 90 medals for participating in wrestling, running, and triathlons in 7 countries and 16 states, an amazing legacy reflecting a lifetime of excellence.
Dick also served as a member of CORE (Congress of Racial Equality) and participated many years in the Civil Rights movement and in anti-war demonstrations. His actions always reflected his beliefs. Again Coach Bill Virchis states: “Coach Robinson reminds me of what John Quincy Adams said, ‘If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more, and become more, you are a leader.’ He is a leader of men.”
Dick has been married for 64 years to Dolores, his beautiful wife and high school sweetheart, who was also a Professor of Art History at Southwestern College.
The Southwestern College Athletic Hall of Fame welcomes Richard Robinson into the Class of 2015 and congratulates him for his outstanding contributions as an athlete, coach, educator and artist.