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Former Gonzaga great Ronny Turiaf gets WCC Hall of Honor call

UPDATED: Wed., Jan. 31, 2018

Gonzaga forward Ronny Turiaf clears the paint after a first-half dunk in the 2005 WCC Tournament title game vs. St. Mary’s. (Brian Plonka / The Spokesman-Review)
Gonzaga forward Ronny Turiaf clears the paint after a first-half dunk in the 2005 WCC Tournament title game vs. St. Mary’s. (Brian Plonka / The Spokesman-Review)

Ronny Turiaf, whose game and magnetic personality left an indelible impression on Gonzaga basketball and the university, is part of the WCC’s 2018 Hall of Honor class.

Turiaf joins nine others, one from each WCC school, in the 10th annual Hall of Honor class. Induction ceremonies will be held March 3 at the Orleans Hotel as part of WCC Tournament festivities in Las Vegas.

Turiaf, who grew up in Le Robert, Martinique, before moving to Paris at age 15, was an enormous fan favorite with his on-court passion and high-flying dunks and blocked shots.

The 6-foot-10 Turiaf averaged as least 15.5 points and 7.5 rebounds each of his last three seasons. His quote adorns a wall in the Zags’ locker room: “I give my heart and soul to Gonzaga basketball. I will always give my heart.”

Gonzaga won 107 games and finished in the top 10 in national polls three times during Turiaf’s career. He was a two-time honorable mention AP All-American.

Turiaf was named first-team All-WCC three times and earned conference Player of the Year honors in 2005. He was named most valuable player of the 2005 WCC Tournament.

Turiaf owns school records for free throws made (643), breaking a 44-year-old record held by Frank Burgess, and 889 attempts. He ranks seventh in career points with 1,723, fifth in rebounding with 859 and third in blocks with 179.

The Los Angeles Lakers drafted Turiaf in the second round in 2005, but his career was put on hold when doctors discovered an enlarged aortic root. He underwent open-heart surgery at Stanford University Medical Center and was working out three months later.

Turiaf played 10 NBA seasons, including stints with the Lakers, Golden State, New York Knicks, Washington, Miami, Los Angeles Clippers and Minnesota. He earned a championship ring with the Heat in 2012.

Turiaf will be joined in the 2018 class by BYU’s Miles Batty (cross country/track), Loyola Marymount’s Brian Quinn (administrator), Pacific’s Ken Earle (golf), Pepperdine’s Randy Wolf (baseball), Portland’s Nicole Karr (cross country/track), Mandy Bible of Saint Mary’s (volleyball), San Diego’s Christine Enger (basketball), San Francisco’s Sue Enos O’Meara (basketball/volleyball) and Santa Clara’s Cameron Rast (soccer).

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