Inducted 2011. Went on to Pass for 4,203 Yards and 52 Touchdowns in his Career, Both School Records.
When Quincy Notre Dame walked on the field for its first game of the 1993 season against defending state champion Hardin Calhoun, it would have been fair to say that not much would have been expected from freshman quarterback Craig Venvertloh. His 69-yard touchdown pass on the first play of the game to John Sparrow turned out to be just one of many highlights in Venvertloh’s football career.
Venvertloh, a 1997 graduate, went on to pass for 4,203 yards and 52 touchdowns in his career, both school records. His 20 touchdown passes in 1995 was a school record, and he is tied for the school record for touchdown passes in a game (4). He was a two-time team captain who led the Raiders to playoff appearances in 1994 and 1995. He passed for 1,395 yards and 14 touchdowns as a junior, and he passed for 1,334 yards and 20 touchdowns as a senior. He completed more than 57 percent of his passes both seasons. During his senior year, he was named to the all-River Trails Conference team at quarterback, defensive back, punter and kicker.
When he graduated, Venvertloh ranked among the top 20 all-time in the Illinois High School Association in passing yards, touchdown passes, pass completions and completion percentage. Football coach Bill Connell said at the end of Venvertloh’s career: “Craig’s the type of athlete you have the chance to coach once every 30 years. He’s the best player in the area because he does it all on offense, defense and special teams.”
Venvertloh lives in Quincy with his wife, Janet, and their children William, Anna and Lily. He is employed by Dot Foods in Mount Sterling as a business development manager.
I am truly honored to be a member of this year’s Hall of Fame class. There are numerous individuals who have helped me along the way, and I would like to extend a personal thank you to each of them. Thank you to Coach Connell for your fire, passion and leadership, which are at the root of the football program’s success. Thank you to Mom and Dad. You blessed me with a wonderful upbringing in which you taught me the benefits of hard work and determination. Dad, thanks for the countless hours throwing and practicing in the backyard. Thank you to my three brothers. Thank you to Scott for your example of fearless leadership, and thank you to Kyle and D.J. for your endless support and encouragement.