April 10, 2006
Two former Major Leaguers, an international basketball legend, a high-profile NBA executive, and four football luminaries comprise the South Carolina Athletic Hall of Fame’s Class of 2006.
The inductees include: former all-star pitchers Jimmy Key of Clemson and LaMarr Hoyt, Charleston native three-time Olympic medalist Katrina McClain, NBA executive and former South Carolina men’s assistant basketball coach Donnie Walsh, along with four names spanning the map of Palmetto State football — Coach Jim Carlen and running back Harold Green of USC, Stanford Jennings of Furman and Brian Ruff of The Citadel. They will be honored with South Carolina’s highest athletic honor on May 22 at the new Columbia Metropolitan Convention Center.
To purchase tickets and advertising, call 803-779-0905 or visit the SCAHOF website www.southcarolinaathletichalloffame.org for more information. Key, a former Clemson and New York Yankees star and four-time All-Star, and Hoyt, a former Keenan High of Columbia star prior to becoming the American League Cy Young Award winner in 1983, mark the first pair of Major League All-Stars to be inducted together in the SCAHOF’s 46 year history. McClain, a two-time All-American at the University of Georgia, starred for the United State’s bronze medal team of the 1988 Olympics as well as the gold medal teams of 1992 and 1996.
Walsh, the right-hand man for Coach Frank McGuire for 12 seasons at USC, has gone on to become one of pro sports most respected executives. A host of former colleagues and Gamecock players have committed to return for his induction.
Carlen, who recruited eventual first-round NFL stars such as Heisman Trophy winner George Rogers, Rick Sanford and Willie Scott, is also expected to attract a large contingent of former players.
Both Green and Jennings played in the Super Bowl. Green, who ranks third in Gamecock rushing records, spent nine seasons in the NFL and made USA Today’s All-Pro team in 1992. Jennings won Southern Conference Player of the Year honors three times and played nine seasons in the NFL.
Ruff earned first-team AP All-American honors in 1976 and made All Southern Conference three times as one of the nation’s dominant linebackers.
The eight inductees will be joined by several award winners on a program that includes a 6 p.m. reception with a band and the 7 p.m. banquet that brings back a host of former inductees to participate in the Blue Jacket ceremony. END
SCAHOF Class of 2006 Biographies
Harold Green Green played at USC from 1986-1989 and led the Gamecocks in rushing for three consecutive seasons. He ranks third in Carolina rushing records with 3,005 yards. And then in 1987, Green rushed for 15 touchdowns attaining a record that still stands. His 33 career touchdowns tie George Rogers for No. 1 in school history. Also in 1987, he rushed for 1,022 yards to become one of just five Gamecocks to reach the 1,000 yard mark in a season. Further, Green made All-South Independent in 1987 and 1989 and played in the East-West Shrine Bowl Game before becoming a second-round draft pick of the NFL Cincinnati Bengals in 1990. Additionally, he played six seasons for the Bengals and rushed for 1,170 yards in 1970 while earning Pro Bowl honors. Finally, he finished his career in one-year stints with the Rams and the Falcons. He bowed out with Atlanta in Super Bowl XXXIII. A USC Hall of Fame inductee, Green made the school’s 100th Anniversary All-Time team in 1992. Recently, he has worked with USC’s academic program for athletes and currently owns automobile dealerships in Columbia and Pittsburgh.
Jimmy Key At Clemson, Key made All Atlantic Coast Conference as a pitcher and Designated Hitter as a senior in 1982. He also earned team MVP honors and led the Tigers in batting (.359) and doubles (21) while winning nine games. After starring at Clemson, the lefthander from Huntsville, Alabama became a four-time All-Star (1985, 1991, 1993, 1994) while pitching for 15 years in the Major Leagues. He compiled a stellar 186-117-career record, which translates to a .614 winning percentage and an ERA of 3.51 from 1984-1998. Then the third-round selection by Toronto in 1982, Key pitched for the Blue Jays from 1984-1992 helping Toronto to a World Championship in 1992; the New York Yankees from 1993-1996; and the Baltimore Orioles from 1997-1998. Additionally, he pitched in four All-Star Games, earning the victory for the American League in 1991. The 6-foot-1, 190-pounder enjoyed his best seasons in 1994 with a 17-4 record, a 3.25 ERA and finishing sixth in the Cy Young Award voting for best pitcher; 1993 with a 18-6 record, a 3.00 ERA and fifth in the Cy Young; and 1987 with a 17-8 record while winning the ERA title at 2.76 and finishing second in the Cy Young.
Donnie Walsh The former USC assistant coach has gone on to become one of the movers and shakers of the NBA. Walsh played at North Carolina, where he earned his bachelors and law degrees. After law school, he turned down job offers from Richard Nixon’s law firm and with the US Department of Justice in order to rejoin his former coach, Frank McGuire at USC. He served as Frank McGuire’s right-hand man for 12 seasons. The loyal assistant seldom received the credit for so much of the success Carolina enjoyed during the glory days of McGuire, which many school fans still regard as the high point of USC’s athletic history. Walsh moved up to the NBA as an assistant coach at Denver before joining the Nuggets front office. He briefly served as the team’s head coach before returning to the front office where he could use his law degree as both a contract negotiator and savvy as a talent evaluator – the same skill he used to find and recruit the likes of Coach Bobby Cremins, John Roche, Tom Owens, ? Winters, Kevin Joyce and Alex English- all SCAHOFers). He also earned a reputation as a master trader and again used his skills to land a host of key free agent acquisitions, such as Columbia native Jermaine O’Neal, who blossomed into an NBA All Star at Indiana. As general manager and team president at Indiana, Walsh built the Pacers into a perennial NBA contender in the late 80s. He hired the legendary Larry Bird to coach the team that made the NBA Finals in 2000-2001. His teams have made the NBA playoffs 15 times in his 16 seasons including making the NBA finals in 2000 and winning the Eastern Conference crown 6 times. Since becoming the Pacers’ CEOand President, Walsh has also guided the construction of 18,345 – seat Conseco Fieldhouse. Now a member of the US Olympic Games Committee for men’s basketball dream teams I and II, Walsh serves on the board of several charities. In 2004, he earned the Indiana Pathfinder award for contributions to youth causes.
Jim Carlen After successful head coaching stops at West Virginia and Texas Tech, Carlen took over at USC from 1975-1981 and compiled a 45-36-1 record to rank number 5 in school winning percentage (.556) and No. 3 in the modern era behind Joe Morrison (.582) and Warren Giese (.571). Additionally, this Tennessee native enjoyed his best years at Carolina in 1979 at 8-4 with a trip to the Hall of Fame Bowl and in 1980 at 8-4 with a victory at Michigan and a trip to the Gator Bowl. Then the 1980 team finished ranked No. 15 in the nation. Also, Carlen took the Gamecocks to the Tangerine Bowl in 1975 when USC recorded a 7-5 mark. Further, his run-oriented offense perfectly suited bruising tailback George Rogers who won the Heisman Trophy in 1980. Similarly, Carlen produced three NFL first-round draft picks in Rogers, Rick Sanford and Willie Scott. In 1980 while the National Coach of the Year at Texas Tech, Carlen won two additional honors at USC as Southern Independent Coach of the Year and Fellowship of Christian Athletes. After coaching in the college ranks, he continued his career coaching two high school teams in Hilton Head where he resides.
Katrina McClain The Charleston native became a two-time All-American at the University of Georgia and one of the most decorated international basketball players in history. McClain starred on U.S. Olympic teams in 1988, 1992 and 1996. In 1988, she led the U.S. team in scoring an average of 17.6 points and rebounding 10.4 per game on the way to a bronze medal. Further, in 1992, McClain averaged 11.4 points and 9.6 rebounds in helping the U.S. win the gold. Then, in 1996, she averaged 14.1 points and 8.3 rebounds and shot an astonishing 73.9 from the field for the American gold medal team. Additionally, McClain, inducted into the Georgia Sports Hall of Fame in 2005, won the 1987 National Player of the Year award while playing for the Bulldogs. She earned consensus All-American honors in 1986 and 1987. Also, McClain played at Georgia from 1983-1987 and during that span the Lady Bulldogs compiled a remarkable 116-15 record as Georgia finished runner-up in the NCAA in 1985 and SEC titles in 1984 and 1986. She still holds Georgia’s single-game records for rebounds (24) and free throws attempted (21), and single season records for points scored (796), scoring average (24.9), field goals made (299), free throws made (176) and free throws attempted (240). She also ranks No. 2 in career points (2,195), rebounds (1,193), blocked shots (290), and field goals made (873). McClain stands No.1 in career free throws made (449) and free throws attempted (616); and No. 7 in career field goals attempted (1,407).
Stanford Jennings A standout running back at Furman, Jennings won Southern Conference Player of the Year three times (1981, 1982, 1983) and played for nine years in the NFL with the Bengals (1984-1990), Saints (1991) and Bucs (1992). In addition, for his NFL career, Jennings rushed 313 times for 1,250 yards (4.0 average) and nine touchdowns, and caught 116 passes for 1,096 yards (9.4 average) and 10 touchdowns. His best single season came in 1984 when he ran for 379 yards and caught 346 yards in receptions. Also, he ran for a 93-yard touchdown for the Bengals in Super Bowl XXXIII. Hence, the Paladins inducted Jennings into their Hall of Fame in 1990, and he currently serves on the Furman Board of Trustees.
LaMarr Hoyt The Columbia native and Keenan High School star became a fifth-round draft pick by the New York Yankees and spent eight years in the Major Leagues. Further, the then 6 foot 1 inch, 222 pound fireballing righthander compiled a 98-69 record and 3.99 ERA for his career. And in 1983, he went 24-10 with a 3.66 ERA for the Chicago White Sox and won the Cy Young Award as the best pitcher in the American League. Additionally, he started on the mound with the San Diego Padres in 1985 and earned the victory and MVP award in the All-Star Game. Also, three times “Dewey” Hoyt had a winning percentage over .700 and three times he ranked No. 1 in allowing the fewest walks per nine innings; and twice he ranked No. 2 in allowing the fewest home runs. LaMarr “Dewey” Hoyt was a dominant pitcher of his time.
Brian Ruff In 1976, the Citadel’s rugged linebacker, Brian Ruff, earned first team Associated Press All American and consensus All-American honors. Additionally, he earned Southern Conference and South Carolina Player of the Year honors in both 1975 and 1976. He was named First Team Associated Press as a senior and the school’s first to make the first team. Further, Ruff was a three-time All-Southern Conference selection and was the first player to have his jersey (No. 51) retired. He led the Bulldogs in tackles four consecutive years (136 as a freshman; 224 as a sophomore; 182 as a junior; 213 as a senior) and recorded 755 tackles in his career (second most in school history is 533). At that time, Ruff twice served as team captain and played for Coach Bobby Ross. Then the Baltimore Colts drafted Ruff in the 11th round in 1976. In 1983, he was joined to The Citadel Athletic Hall of Fame.
January 15, 2019