Curt Hammerbeck

Induction Year: 2011

Curt Hammerbeck

Inducted as a recipient of the
Carl Vergamini Award for Contributions to Yellowjacket Athletics

A fixture at UW-Superior and an ardent supporter of Yellowjacket athletics in the 1960s, Curt Hammerbeckis the 2011 recipient of the Carl Vergamini Contributions to Yellowjacket Athletics Award. Mr. Hammerbeck isinducted to the UW-Superior Hall of Fame posthumously.  

A large part of university athletics today is centered on recruiting. In the 1960s, the recruiting game was different and Mr. Hammerbeck was front and center for UW-Superior, then known as Wisconsin State University Superior. Without a budget dedicated to recruiting, Mr. Hammerbeck took on the responsibility of recruiting student-athletes to the university, donating his time and often using his own funds to do so.

With a focus on finding talent for Yellowjacket football and wrestling, it was Mr. Hammerbeck who ventured to various state tournaments, talking about the university and making student-athletes aware there was a four-year university in Superior. Once the talent was discovered, Mr. Hammerbeck would report his findings to Mertz Mortorelli, and the legendary coach would set out to make these young recruits Yellowjackets.  

No distance was too far when it came to recruiting, as Mr. Hammerbeck often could be found talking with student-athletes in Ohio, Pennsylvania and New York in addition to closer locales such as Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan and Illinois. In the end, Mr. Hammerbeck put his fingerprints on Yellowjacket athletics, being responsible for many student-athletes who played football and wrestled at UW-Superior.  

Before recruiting for the Yellowjackets, Mr. Hammerbeck was a scout for the Cleveland Browns of the NFL, the team that originally drafted another Yellowjacket legend, Mr. Dom Moselle.