Houghton to Induct Two into Athletics Hall of Honor

Houghton to Induct Two into Athletics Hall of Honor

Jason Mucher

Houghton College Athletics is pleased to recognize the contributions of Betty (Bjorkgren ’52) Denny and Darren Berkley ’93 with their induction into the 2021 Hall of Honor Class.

Denny made her mark as a participant in Houghton’s Purple and Gold program where she was involved in field hockey, basketball, track and field, tennis, and softball. Her participation earned her the “Big H” award. She won the all-campus competition in tennis and ping pong and served as secretary-treasurer of the Athletic Association.

At the end of her senior year, Denny was honored with the annual Female Sportsmanship Award. Her husband, Bob Denny, received the male award, and, following the awards ceremony, the couple announced their engagement.

After Houghton, she and Bob moved to Pennsylvania, where she taught and supported Bob’s 50-year career as a pastor in Pennsylvania, Indiana and Ohio. They were married for 62 years until Bob’s passing in 2014. Today, Denny lives in Cincinnati, Ohio, where she remains fairly active and proudly claims her four children—all of whom work actively in a church—grandchildren and great-grandchildren as her greatest accomplishments.

Berkley put up big numbers for Houghton men’s basketball. He finished his four-year career with 1,508 points, which stands fifth all-time in the Houghton record books. His 244 career three-pointers rank No. 1 in Houghton history. He was a two-time all-conference selection and was part of a Houghton team that finished 18-9, earned a top-20 ranking in the NAIA during the season and made an appearance in the district playoffs.

Since moving on from Houghton, Berkley has served as a high school teacher, coach and administrator. He is currently a coach at Massaponox High School in Virginia, where he led his team to the school’s first two district championships in 2019 and 2020 and advanced to last year’s 6A state final four. His overall coaching record is 328-190 in 21 years on the sideline.

“More than the wins and losses have been the opportunities to influence lives. Houghton helped me grow into a Christian leader,” said Berkley. “All the spiritual opportunities in chapel, the dorms, celebration and team trips enabled me to seek the Lord and grow in his grace.”