LeCharles Bentley, Mike Conley Jr. and the rest of the 2017 members of the Ohio State athletics hall of fame were introduced Saturday night to the Ohio Stadium crowd at halftime of the Maryland game, a moment that Bentley said was special for all kinds of reasons.

“The legacy and the tradition and the pageantry of Ohio State, to be a part of that, I mean, what more could you ask for,” Bentley said.

The All-American and 2001 Rimington Award winner, who went on to a career in the NFL cut short by injury, said having his children along for the induction sweetened the moment.

“That’s special,” Bentley said. “To have your kids be a part of the work you put into this whole process of life, man it’s beautiful.”

Conley, a member of the Memphis Grizzlies since 2007 when they made him the fourth player taken overall in the NBA draft, made a point to make the ceremony despite being at Ohio State for less than a year.

“It means a lot, man, I really am humbled to be here,” Conley said. “It’s great to be back in front of the home fans, and see the reception that we get for all of the inductees. It’s just a blessing.”

Conley led the 2006-07 Buckeyes to the NCAA championship game where it was beaten by Florida. He declared for the NBA soon after, as did his high school and college teammate Greg Oden, also a freshman.

Conley has never second-guessed leaving, in terms of what it meant for his career, but he said Saturday he knows what he missed.

“I missed a lot, I tell you what; I missed college,” he said. “That’s something you can’t get back, those three years I would have been here. It’s something I think about all the time, this atmosphere, these people, students. It’s an unreal place to be, especially for a student-athlete. So I definitely missed that.”

But there he stood, a member of the hall of fame.

“I felt like I left a little bit of a mark, I wanted to leave more,” Conley said, smiling. “If we’d won the championship I would have felt a lot better. But still, what we did that year, I felt it did a lot for the university. I know it did a lot for us. … It helped put Ohio State back in the light we deserve to be at.”

Others inducted included distance running star Tom Byers, Chelsea Davis (women’s diving), Pete Hanson (current men’s volleyball coach), Bryce Keough (wrestling), Christina Manning (track and field) and Nancy Pearson (women’s swimming).