Twelve Tigers Make the ACC 50th Anniversary Baseball Team

Twelve Tigers Make the ACC 50th Anniversary Baseball Team

Sept. 24, 2002

The Atlantic Coast Conference 50th Anniversary Baseball Team was announced today by Commissioner John Swofford. The 52-member team was voted on by the nine league institutions as decided by the league’s 50th Anniversary Committee.

Clemson led all league schools with twelve members on the Golden Anniversary team while Georgia Tech came in second with nine honorees. NC State and Wake Forest each had seven players selected, followed by Florida State (6), North Carolina (4), Duke (3), Maryland (2) and Virginia with two.

Rusty Atkins, Clemson (1965-1967) Only Clemson baseball player in the Clemson Ring of Honor … only Clemson baseball player in history to have his jersey retired … had a 41-game hitting streak, a Division I record that stood until the 1980s and remains one of the top five hitting streaks in college baseball history … still Clemson’s only three-time All-American in baseball … hit .379 for his career … struck out just 16 times in 396 at bats … ranked fifth in the nation in batting in 1965 with a .444 average 16th in ACC history in batting average, second among players who played with wooden bats … three-time first-team All-ACC, one of just three Tigers to do so.

Jeff Baker, Clemson (2000-2001) First-team All-American as a sophomore third baseman in 2001 by Collegiate Baseball … first-team All-ACC who was league’s home run champion … finished season in top 10 in the nation in home runs … first-team preseason All-American for 2002 … finished 2001 with 23 home runs and 75 RBIs to go with .738 slugging percentage … hit 34 home runs his first two years at Clemson, more than any other Tiger in history as a freshman and sophomore … member of USA Baseball National team for 2000 and 01 … First-team Freshman All-American in 2000, when he hit 11 home runs and drove in 64 runs … a career .340 hitter.

Brian Barnes, Clemson (1986-1989) ACC’s career leader in wins with 44, in strikeouts with 513, and innings pitched with 475.1 … first-team All-American according to Coach’s Association in 1989 when he posted a 16-3 record and 208 strikeouts … one of the top five players in college baseball history in terms of strikeouts … led the nation in strikeouts in 1989 with 208 … he was fourth in wins with 16 … took Clemson to three consecutive NCAA Tournaments … had three seasons of double figures in wins and his 44 wins for his career remain a school record … finished with 44-10 record and an .815 winning percentage … named ACC Player of the Year and ACC Tournament MVP in 1989.

Kris Benson, Clemson (1994-1996) Most decorated athlete in Clemson history … National Player of the Year in 1996 according to Baseball America and Collegiate Baseball … he also won the Dick Howser Award and the Smith Award … named ACC Athlete of the Year in 1996, only Clemson athlete to win the award … starting pitcher on United States Olympic Team in 1996 … first-team All-ACC in 1996 … 1996 ACC Player of the Year … the number-one pick of the 1996 Major League Draft, the only Clemson athlete in any sport to be the #1 pick … led Clemson to the College World Series in 1995 and 96 … ranked fourth in the nation in wins in 1996 (14) … he was fifth in ERA and fifth in strikeouts/9 innings.

Rusty Gerhardt, Clemson (1969-1972) Fifth in ACC history in wins with 334 … he is sixth in conference history in strikeouts (382) second in complete games with 26, also seventh in innings pitched … Second-team All-American by Coaches Association in 1971 … earned 34 wins in his career, second in Clemson history … had 382 strikeouts to rank second in Clemson history, had 2.39 career ERA, including 1.79 in 1970 … three-time first-team All-ACC, only pitcher in Clemson history to do that.

Khalil Greene, Clemson (1999-2001) Set Clemson all-time record for fielding percentage in a season by a shortstop in 2001 with .963 figure … he broke the record that had been held by Major Leaguer Bill Spiers … 3rd-team freshman All-American in 1999 … first-team All-ACC in 2001 … ranked in top 20 in school history in batting average with .345 figure … ranked in top 10 in school history in total bases, doubles, RBIs, hits … a career .390 hitter in NCAA Tournament play … a common denominator on Clemson Super Regional teams of 1999-00-01.

Bert Heffernan, Clemson (1985-1988) First-team All-American according to Baseball Coach’s Association in 1988 … hit .337 for his career and belted out record 335 career hits … set school record for walks with 207 and games played with 259 … third in ACC history in runs scored with 285 … he is still 12th in doubles with 63 and sixth in hits … caught more games than any player in Clemson history … regarded by 36-year head coach Bill Wilhlem as his favorite player for his hustle, desire and team leadership.

Jimmy Key, Clemson (1980-1982) First-team All-ACC at two positions in 1982, pitcher and DH … only Clemson player to be All-ACC at two different positions in the same year … led Clemson in doubles as a hitter with then record 21 in 1982 … he also had team best .359 batting average, and team best nine wins an ACC leading total … led the team in ERA that year with 2.79 figure … believed to be only ACC player to lead his team in batting average, ERA and wins in the same year … went on to outstanding professional career, he was on two World Series Championship teams (Yankees and Bluejays) … still 21st in ACC history in innings pitched.

Billy Koch, Clemson (1994-1996) Tenth in ACC history in strikeouts with 338 … he is 10th in strikeouts/9 innings with 11.0 … The number-four selection of the 1996 Major League Draft … starter on Clemson’s College World Series teams of 1995 and 96 … has had outstanding career in the major leagues as a relief specialist … member of 1996 United States Olympic team … ranked fifth in the nation in strikeouts/9 innings with 11.5 in 1995 … he was third in the category in 1996 with 12.3.

Matthew LeCroy, Clemson (1995-1997) Two-time All-American … was second-team selection by Coaches & Baseball Writers in 1996 and first-team choice by Baseball Writers and Baseball America in 1997 … concluded his career as school’s leader in home runs with 53, including school record 24 in 1997 … still in top 10 in ACC history in career home runs, he is 16th in RBIs … had 208 career RBIs and a .336 batting average … first-team All-ACC and member of ACC Academic Honor Roll in 1997 … member of 1996 United States Olympic team … now in the Major Leagues with the Minnesota Twins.

Shane Monahan, Clemson (1993-1995) Fourth in ACC history in batting average with .394 figure … also ninth in runs scored, third in triples and fifth in total hits, all achieved even though he played just three years … consensus first-team All-American in 1994 when he hit .415 with 11 home runs, 53 runs batted in an 23 stolen bases … also chosen All-American as a junior in 1995 by the National Baseball Writers Association and the American Baseball Coach’s Association … MVP of the 1994 ACC Tournament … All-ACC in 1994 and 95 … hit .394 for his career, best ever for a player with over 500 at bats … concluded his career as school’s career leader in hits and runs, led the nation in hits with 137 and runs with 97 in 1994 … first-team freshman All-American in 1993 … named ACC Player of the Year in 1995 … ACC Tournament MVP in 1994.

Billy Spiers, Clemson (1985-1987) 1st-team All-American according to Sporting News in 1987 … the #13 pick of the Major League draft in 1987 … set Clemson record for fielding percentage by a shortstop with a .950 percentage in 1987 … a prime reason Clemson returned to the NCAA Tournament in 1987 after a seven year absence … hit .380 as a freshman in 1985 … first-team All-ACC & member of ACC Academic Honor Roll in 1987 … a member of the Clemson Hall of Fame … played 13 years in the Major Leagues with various clubs, most recently with the Houston Astros in 2001. ACC 50th Anniversary Baseball Team

The ACC’s 50th Anniversary Baseball team, in alphabetical order, is as follows:

Rusty Atkins Clemson 1965-1967 Fort Mill, S.C.

Jake Austin Wake Forest 1989-1992 Atlanta, Ga.

Jeff Baker Clemson 2000-2001 Woodbridge, Va.

Scott Bankhead North Carolina 1982-1984 Reidsville, N.C.

Brian Bark NC State 1987-1990 Randallstown, Md.

Brian Barnes Clemson 1986-1989 Roanoke Rapids, N.C.

Kris Benson Clemson 1994-1996 Kennesaw, Ga.

Scott Bradley North Carolina 1979-1981 Essex Fells, N.J.

Tom Bradley Maryland 1967-1968 Falls Church, Va.

Kevin Brown Georgia Tech 1984-1986 McIntyre, Ga.

Brian Buchanan Virginia 1992-1994 Clifton, Va.

Mike Caldwell NC State 1968-1971 Tarboro, N.C.

J.D. Drew Florida State 1995-1997 Hahira, Ga.

Nomar Garciaparra Georgia Tech 1992-1994 Whittier, Calif.

Rusty Gerhardt Clemson 1969-1972 Baltimore, Md.

Khalil Greene Clemson 1999-2001 Key West, Fla.

Tommy Gregg Wake Forest 1982-1985 Winston-Salem, N.C.

Seth Greisinger Virginia 1994-1996 McLean, Va.

John-Ford Griffin Florida State 1999-2001 Sarasota, Fla.

Ty Griffin Georgia Tech 1986-1988 Tampa, Fla.

Terry Harvey NC State 1992-1995 Dacula, Ga.

Bert Heffernan Clemson 1985-1988 Centerreach, N.Y.

Riccardo Ingram Georgia Tech 1986-1987 Douglas, Ga.

Ryan Jackson Duke 1991-1994 Sarasota, Fla.

Jonathan Johnson Florida State 1993-1995 Ocala, Fla.

Jimmy Key Clemson 1980-1982 Huntsville, Ala.

Billy Koch Clemson 1994-1996 West Babylon, N.Y.

Matthew LeCroy Clemson 1995-1997 Belton, S.C.

Mike MacDougal Wake Forest 1997-1999 Mesa, Ariz.

Quinton McCracken Duke 1989-1992 Southport, N.C.

Marshall McDougall Florida State 1999-2000 Valrico, Fla.

Billy Merrifield Wake Forest 1980-1983 Rocky Mount, N.C.

Shane Monahan Clemson 1993-1995 Marietta, Ga.

Jeremy Morris Florida State 1994-1997 Quincy, Fla.

Jim Norris Maryland 1968-1970 Seaford, N.Y.

Jon Palmieri Wake Forest 1996-1999 Mineola, N.Y.

Jay Payton Georgia Tech 1992-1994 Zanesville, Ohio

Jim Poole Georgia Tech 1986-1988 Voorhes, N.J.

Brad Rigby Georgia Tech 1992-1994 Longwood, Fla.

Scott Schoeneweis Duke 1993-1996 Mt. Laurel, N.J.

Billy Scripture Wake Forest 1962-1964 Virginia Beach, Va.

Tom Sergio NC State 1994-1997 Norristown, Pa.

Brick Smith Wake Forest 1978-1981 Charlotte, N.C.

Billy Spiers Clemson 1985-1987 Cameron, S.C.

B.J. Surhoff North Carolina 1983-1985 Rye, N.Y.

Mark Teixeira Georgia Tech 1999-2001 Severna Park, Md.

Jason Varitek Georgia Tech 1991-1994 Longwood, Fla.

Jake Weber NC State 1995-1998 Wappingers Falls, N.Y.

Walt Weiss North Carolina 1983-1985 Suffern, N.Y.

Paul Wilson Florida State 1992-1994 Orlando, Fla.

Tracy Woodson NC State 1982-1984 Richmond, Va.

Turtle Zaun NC State 1985-1988 Hanover, Va.