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Congratulations to our first inductee into the 
London Beefeaters Hall of Fame in the Team Category

2001 London Beefeaters

The return of the London Beefeaters from hiatus saw a legend at the helm as Mike Circelli lead the team back on the field.

The 2001 team, led by Quarterback Rob Umbelina, All Canadian Mhoudy Halbouni and star running back Jason Allison, reignited what would become the longest continual era of Beefeaters Football.

From 2001 to today, the team has competed on the field every fall with pride, going back to the 2001 team that was able to unite the London football community, bringing players from over 20 area schools together under the banner of the Blue and Red.

Congratulations to our first inductees into the 
London Beefeaters Hall of Fame in the Individual Category

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Rod only played one year with the Beefeaters but what a year that was for this star defensive player. Rod joined the team in 1983 and immediately established himself as, perhaps, the greatest defensive player of all-time with the Beefs.

Rod earned 267 defensive points in the 10-game regular season, an amazing average of 26.7 per game. That total still stands as the CJFL regular season record for defensive points. Rod holds the Beefeater record for Most Points in a single game, 48, and is third in that CJFL category. Rod’s total of 91 tackles is another season record in the CJFL. His 15 tackles on August 20, 1983 established the Beefeater team record in this category and is in the Top 10 all-time in the CJFL.

Not surprisingly with these statistics, Rod was named an OFC All-Star linebacker and OFC Defensive Player of the Year in 1983. At the national championship game that year he was honoured as the Outstanding Defensive Player in the CJFL and remains, to this day, the only Beefeater to receive this award.

CLASSIC ERA (1975-2000) PLAYER                                                                                               


Following a stellar high school career in multi-sports at Laurier S.S., Ron signed with the London Beefeaters in 1980, joining his High School coach, Bob Gooder, as the Beefs began a rebuild.

In his first year in the OFC, an 11-team conference at that time, Ron was named Rookie of the Year and a Conference All-Star Receiver.

In 1981 he was again named an OFC All-Star Receiver and led the league in scoring with a team record 109 points and in receptions with 45 catches.

In his final season, 1982, Ron surpassed his previous accolades. He was named the Offensive Player of the Year in the entire CJFL, the Offensive Player of the Year in the OFC, an OFC All-Star Receiver and he again led the league in Scoring with 104 points and Receiving with 48 receptions.

Ron is the only London Beefeater to be honoured as a CJFL Outstanding Offensive Player in the team’s history.

A few years ago, the Beefeaters named their Offensive Player of the Year Trophy after Ron to commemorate his great career with the Beefeaters.

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MODERN ERA (2001-PRESENT) PLAYER                                               


Zack began his career with the Beefeaters in 2009 where his performance earned him an opportunity with the University of Montreal Carabins where he played in 2010 and 2011. In 2012 he returned to the Beefeaters and was an integral part of the team’s first-ever OFC championship.

In 2012 Zack was named the OFC’s winner of the Alex Stajic Memorial Special Teams’ Player of the Year; the OFC All-Star Place Kicker; the OFC All-Star Punter and he led the conference statistically in Scoring, Kick-Offs, Field Goals and Converts.

At the CJFL’s Annual General Meeting in 2012, Zack was named a CJFL All-Canadian Place Kicker.

Following his time with the Beefs, Zack played at Western University. He was drafted by the CFL’s Edmonton Eskimos (Elks) but didn’t sign with the team. In 2016 Zack became a member of the Ottawa RedBlacks and helped them win the 104th Grey Cup that year. Zack also played for the Toronto Argonauts.

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COACH/BUILDER CATEGORY                                                                                                  


Bob Gooder is a legend in London football circles and one of the reasons there is still a London Beefeater football team. Following an outstanding career as Head Football Coach at Laurier S.S., Bob was approached
by a number of players from the Beefs who were extremely concerned that the team would not survive after
a disastrous 1979 season, especially off the field.

As Bob related in a recent radio interview, the players came to his house to plead with him to take over the team. The discussion took place over “adult beverages” and, when Bob declined their offer, the players promptly left and didn’t finish their libations. A surprised Bob figured if they were that dedicated, he could not leave them in the lurch and he agreed to not only coach but basically take over the team entirely.

Bob was coaching at Montcalm S.S. as well when he took over the team in 1980 so he had a full plate. Regardless, his efforts with the Beefs’ resurrection earned him the OFC’s Coach of the Year. He followed that in 1981 with another selection as the OFC’s Coach of the Year.

Bob continued to coach the Beefs through to 1983. In 1984 the team was forced to take a year off due to the lack of suitable practice facilities in the City of London. The team came back in 1985 with Bob more in the background and a new coaching staff.

It is safe to say that, without Bob, the Beefeaters would not be around today. His legacy was honoured by the team in 2021 with the naming of our MVP Award as the Bob Gooder Trophy. His name is also honoured by the local High School Football Conference with the Bob Gooder Awards to Graduating Players from the London Conferences.

BUILDER/COACH CATEGORY                                                                                               


The only thing with a longer association with the Beefeaters than Jim is the logo that was designed in 1975.
Jim’s friend Bob Gooder, a colleague at Laurier S.S., asked Jim to help out for a little while when Bob took over
the team in 1980. Well, Jim is still “helping out” to this day, you see him walking up and down the sideline with his crew doing the game stats, something he has been doing since 1980.

In 1981, Bob again asked Jim to help out with the Conference and he became Conference Statistician, a position he held until 2018. As Conference Statistician, Jim was instrumental in setting up, along with other CJFL statisticians, the offensive and defensive statistics procedure we have today.

Jim retired from teaching in 2000 and immediately joined the Board of Directors of the Beefs, initiating the search for Beefeater Alumni and starting an Alumni group that received Alumni Updates on a regular basis. Over the next several years, Jim became the team Registrar, managed the Website and performed other tasks as needed to keep the team on the field. With the assistance of Jen Annen, Jim still maintains the Website plus contributing to our Facebook pages and writing Alumni Updates.

Jim is a Life Member of the CJFL and, in 2017, received the highest non-playing honour that the CJFL can bestow, the Ed Henick Meritorious Service Award, one of four people in Ontario to be so honoured.