Jerry Francomano began bowling with his father in the New York City area in 1956. After participating in the junior leagues, he began adult competition at age 16. From 1970-1974, he was co-owner of Rab's Pro Shop in New York, where he began acquiring the skills that today identify him as one of the nation's leading bowling ball drilling technicians.Back to Hall of Fame
In 1976, Jerry moved to Northern Virginia and immediately became active in many areas. From his arrival until 1978, he immediately put to use his skills as a professional ball driller at the pro shop at Annandale Bowl.
As night manager of Rinaldi's Shirley Park Bowl (1978-79) and manager of Seminary Lanes (1980-83), Jerry worked tirelessly to utilize modern and improved lane maintenance techniques to enhance the enjoyment and skill level of NCABA members.
His personal commitment to this undertaking put pressure on area proprietors to match his efforts to stay competitive. Thus Jerry helped pave the way for younger NCABA bowlers to participate on lane conditions which strengthened their competitive potential and help improve their chances for success in PBA competition.
Despite his time-consuming and multi-faceted involvement in the sport, Jerry continued to perform on the lanes at a level commensurate with the area's top scratch bowlers.
From 1981-83, he was a member of the Pocket Pro Shop team that won the prestigious Virginia Masters scratch league during its final two years. During 1982-83, Jerry contributed a 253 game towards a 1,033 four-man game that ranked fifth nationwide that season.
An active PBA member for the last 10 years, Jerry has cashed in several tournaments, with his highest finish being seventh in a southern regional event.
In 1987-88, Jerry ranked sixth in the NCABA with an outstanding 213.8 composite average.
In May 1986, Jerry opened the Sports Plus Pro Shop in Springfield. Three years later, he and his partners acquired the Carmen Don Pro Shop in Alexandria.
Jerry's achievements as a professional bowling ball technician are unsurpassed in NCABA history. He evaluates new products for several top bowling ball manufacturers, and he was directly involved in the design, development, and production of the Shark bowling ball and the AMF Sumo, which has proven to be one of the most successful balls in AMF history.
Nationally recognized as one of the top ball drillers in the country, he often has been credited during ESPN telecasts as playing a major role in the success of competing players.
An excellent instructor, who has tirelessly donated his time, his filmed bowling tips were aired last year on the Home Team Sports cable channel.
Since 1988, Jerry's "Shop Talk" column has appeared in BOWL Magazine. His February 1990 column entitled "The 'Hole' Truth" received a national award from the American Bowling Congress. His annual "Bowling Ball Rating Guide" Is widely praisedóand usedóby bowlers of every level.
Despite his many activities aimed at the advanced bowler or serious hobbyist, Jerry always has found time to lend assistance to those in need at every level of the game. Since 1987, and currently in conjunction with Sports Plus/Carmen Don, he has been one of the major sponsors/participants in raising money for Muscular Dystrophy. He also conducts an outdoor "bowling on the green" program for children with Muscular Dystrophy that has been very successful.
Jerry Francomano's top bowling credentials, combined with his outgoing efforts to promote and improve our sport at every level, make him an outstanding and well-deserved addition to the NCABA Hall of Fame.