Sports Legends Reunion Chairman, Tex Williams notified Michael V Dunlap ll (Mike) of Ravenswood that he and others will be honored July 11, at the Charleston Coliseum & Convention Center, as WV All Sports Legends.
WV All Sports Legends are making history. It is the largest sports dinner of its kind in the United States.
Dunlap was born on April, 14, 1967 in Madison, to parents Michael V. Dunlap (deceased) and J. Connie Browning Dunlap. He has one sister Tracy Rae Dunlap. Grandparents: Edward & Pauline Byus Dunlap and Jessie Clifford & Ruth Ryan Browning. (all deceased)
Dunlap’s roots began in Morrisvale, Boone County. His father joined the US Navy in 1966 during the Vietnam War and was deployed when he Mike was born. He was five and a half months old before his father saw him for the first time.
Dunlap and his mother lived with his grandmother Ruth Browning, three aunts, and one uncle while his father served his country for four years. His father returned home in 1970 and went to work for the C&O Railroad. Dunlap’s sister, Tracy Rae, was born the next year.
They moved several times while he was young to be closer to his Dad’s work. He started kindergarten in Madison, West Virginia, and then first grade at Morrisvale Grade School in Morrisvale. In 1977, Dunlap and his family moved to Nitro, where his parents bought a home.
Dunlap started fifth grade at Nitro-Putnam Elementary in Nitro, sixth grade at Poca Middle School in Poca, and ninth grade at Poca High School.
Living in town they had a choice to attend Nitro Schools in Kanawha County or Poca Schools in Putnam County. Dunlap and his sister chose to attend Poca Schools.
His football career started when he was in seventh grade. Soon after, articles started to be written about an up-and-coming player.
Dunlap started training with his father, who was a standout player at Scott High School in Madison. He attended various football camps in the summers to learn the fundamentals of football, and he ran a 4.9-40 yr dash. Coaches began to notice his quickness as a big guy.
”I owe my father for my success in football, he instilled in me to be the best I could be.” Dunlap said. “I also owe my success to other family, coaches, teammates, and friends. My sister committed much of her time traveling to games and my mother made sure that my uniform was always scrubbed and clean.”
Dunlap had a very rewarding football career at Poca High School. At the end of his high school football career he was six-foot-four-inches and 295 pounds.
“I am grateful and honored to be named a WV All Sports Legend.” Dunlap said. “I am also grateful and honored to have received other awards and accommodations as a football player at Poca High School, home of the ‘Poca Dots.’”
Many people influenced him during his football career, and life, including his father and mother, Mike and Connie Dunlap; Don Jennings; Dick Darby; Allen Osborne; Bob Lemley; Perry Moss; Bill Legg; Don Nehlen; friend Sam Huff and uncle John Browning, Vietnam War Veterans; and Military Veterans, George Becker, and Donnie Overstreet to name a few.
Career: Successes-Honors-Highlights include:
• Minor & Senior League baseball City of Nitro (All stars for both)
• Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts
• Umpired minor league and little league ball, City of Nitro
• Poca Middle School Football seventh and eighth grade
• Poca Middle School Hall of Fame
• Putnam County shot put record eighth grade.
• 1981 Captain freshman football and basketball
• 1982 Rookie of the Year Daily Mail
• 1983 Football Second Team All Southern
• 1984 Football First Team All County
• First Team All Conference
• First Team All State
• First Team Bally’s All American
• Top 100 Street & Smith
• Thom McCann Award
• Hunt Award (WV Lineman of the Year)
• Third in voting for Kennedy Award
• Morgantown Touchdown Club High School Player of the Year
• Captain of the South, North-South Football Game
• 1985 Captain of basketball team, Most Athletic, Poca High School, Citizen of the Month City of Nitro.
• Three year starter offensive and defensive tackle both ways for varsity football at Poca High School. Lettered in basketball, track, and baseball.
• Senior six-foot-four-inches and 295 pounds. 4.9 40yd dash. 97 Tackles.
• 1986 Top 20 Street & Smith College Lineman
• WVU Football
• Recruited to play football by many major colleges to include WVU, Norte Dame, South Carolina (ranked number two in the nation at that time), UCLA, Penn State, and many others.
• 1992 Graduate of Newport News Shipbuilding Apprentice School as a Machinist. Lettered in football and track. “Graduating Apprentice School was one of the most fulfilling accomplishments of my life,” Dunlap said. It has been compared to an Ivy League education.
• Employed by Newport News Shipbuilding and Dry Doc Company during the Gulf War. Helped build and make parts for several US Navy Aircraft Carriers and US Navy Nuclear Submarines
• 1995 employed by Ravenswood Aluminum (Pechiney) now Constellium as a Machinist.
• Sports Writer for various media outlets. Commentator WMOV Radio “Talkin to the Mike.”
• Created North-South Football Hall of Fame and served as Director for one year
• President of the Don Nehlen Chapter of the National Football Foundation
• 2000 married Joan Lea Mckown , daughter Richard McKown (deceased) and mother Rosemary of Ravenswood
• Retired from Pechiney with industrial injury in 2015
• Recovering from Metabolic stroke in 2018
• Moved to Jackson County in 1995. A resident of Ravenswood, with his wife Joan since 2002.
• His mother J. Connie Browning Dunlap also lives in Ravenswood.
• Plans are in the works to write a book about his football journey.