SWU Athletics Hall of Fame
Through the direction of the Warrior Club, The Southern Wesleyan University Athletics Hall of Fame is designed to recognize and honor former student-athletes, coaches, administrators, and other individuals who have made significant contributions to the University and its athletic program.
The first class was inducted in October of 2005. The induction ceremony highlighted the centennial homecoming on the campus of Southern Wesleyan.
Since the centennial induction ceremony, there have been three other inductions in May of 2007, 2008 and most recently May of 2011.
The following individuals have been inducted with year of graduation, name, sport and year of induction.
Class of 2005
'62 Dr C. Keith Connor, Established Dept. of Athletics/Inaugural Director-2005
Dr. Keith Connor arrived at SWU in 1962 as a combination high school senior and college freshman. Following military service in Korea, he returned to the campus in 1969 as a full-time physical education instructor and director of athletics. In 1970, he introduced a proposal for the development of intercollegiate athletics. Since that time, he has guided the department to its present status. During his tenure, he has coached many of the university’s teams and was instrumental in taking several teams to the NCCAA and NAIA national tournaments. He has been a leader in NAIA and NCCAA organizations. In 1992, Dr. Connor was recognized as the university baseball field was named in his honor. Also, in 2005, he was named as the first inductee into the Southern Wesleyan University Athletics Hall of Fame. Dr. Connor will continue to serve as professor of physical education and program coordinator in physical education. In this capacity, he will provide leadership to advance and expand the physical education program of the university and its accreditation.
“We are deeply appreciative of Dr. Connor’s 36 years of leadership as a faculty member and athletic director. He has provided a foundation for the continued growth of the university’s athletic program and will continue to serve as a valued and outstanding member of the university faculty,” Dr. Spittal said.
'74 Robert Cheek, Men's Basketball-2005
Robert Cheek was a member of the men’s basketball team from 1970-1974 and was named First Team NCCAA All-America in 1972-1973 and 1973-1974. Robert was a member of the inaugural men’s basketball and intercollegiate team at Southern Wesleyan University in 1970.
'77 Alvin Holland, Men's Basketball-2005
Alvin Holland was a three-time team MVP, and was named Second Team NCCAA All-American in 1976. He earned First Team NCCAA All-American honors in 1977.
'77 George Barahona, Men's Soccer-2005
George Barahona was a four-time MVP for the men’s soccer team during his time at Southern Wesleyan University. He earned Second Team NCCAA All-American status in the 1975 and 1976 seasons.
'79 Paul Agu, Men's Soccer-2005
Paul Agu earned First Team NCCAA All-American during his 1978 and 1979 seasons with the men’s soccer program at Southern Wesleyan University.
'80 Innocent Nwankwo, Men's Soccer-2005
Innocent Nwankwo is the all-time leading scorer in the history of the men’s soccer program. He was named 1st team NCCAA All-American in 1978 and 1979.
'81 Paul Johnson, Men's Soccer-2005
Paul Johnson was named 1st team NCCAA All-American two consecutive years in 1978 and 1979 for the Warrior men’s soccer program.
'82 Charles Wimphrie, Men's Basketball-2005
A Laurens, South Carolina native, Charles Wimphrie finished his career at Southern Wesleyan where some of his records still stand. In 1981, he was fifth in the nation in scoring with 27.5 points per game. His single season scoring record of 781 points still stands, and his single game scoring mark of 47 was the all-time high, until it was broken in 2010. He went on to play professionally in Brazil. Charles began his coaching career at SWU in 1986 as an assistant coach. He spent two years as assistant before being named head women’s coach at SWU in 1991. He guided the Warriors to the 1992 Palmetto State Conference Championship with a 22-5 record. He was named NAIA District Six Coach of the Year and Palmetto State Conference Coach of the Year. In 1993 Wimphrie was named Southern Wesleyan's men’s basketball coach and during that time has guided the Warriors to back-to-back 20 wins seasons. Coach Wimphrie’s 1999 team made it to the “Final Four” of the GACC Tournament, but lost a close three-point shootout to Faulkner University in the semi-finals. The Warriors went on to capture the NCCAA South Region Championship and earned a bid to the NCCAA Nationals in Oakland, Indiana. The Warriors finished the season with a school record 26 wins. The 2003-2004 team finished the season with an 18-13 overall record and 12-7 in the GACC, good enough for a third place conference finish. The defining season arrived in 2005-2006 as the Warriors earned a berth in the NAIA National Tournament. The team also ended the regular conference season as runner-up in the highly competitive Southern States Athletic Conference.
'84 John Perry, Men's Basketball-2005
John Perry was a member of the men’s basketball team and earned Third Team NAIA All-American honors in 1983-1984, after the team won the District 6 Championship. He followed that campaign with a First Team NAIA All-American honor for his efforts during the 1984-1985 season.
'85 Raymond Lawson, Men's Basketball-2005
Raymond Lawson was a member of the men’s basketball team and was named Second Team NCCAA All-American in 1982-1983. He earned First Team honors on the NCCAA All-American team in 1984-1985, and was a part of the 1983-1984 District 6 Championship team.
'87 Deborah Holcombe, Volleyball-2005
Deborah Holcombe was a member of the volleyball team and was named First Team NCCAA All-American in consecutive years in 1985 and 1986.
'94 Uzzie Cannon, Women's Basketball-2005
Uzzie Cannon was a member of the women’s basketball team, and is currently the all-time leading scorer and all-time leading rebounder in the school’s history. She was the 1992 Palmetto Conference Player of the Year, the NAIA District 6 Player of the Year in 1993 and a Second Team NCCAA All-American in 1993-1994.
'95 Alicia Pratt, Softball-2005
Alicia Pratt was an NAIA All-American with the softball program at SWU. She was a First Team selection in 1992, Second Team in 1994, and First Team again in 1995. She finished her career as one of the most decorated student-athletes with the softball program. She was also named a NAIA Scholar-Athlete.
'99 Will Barnes, Men's Golf-2005
William Barnes was a member of the golf team and was an NCCAA All-American in 1996, 1997, and 1998 earning himself a First Team selection in all three years.
'01 Laura McKenzie, Women's Cross Country-2005
Laura Mckenzie raised the bar for all women’s cross country runners that have come to SWU as she qualified for the NAIA National Championships in three consecutive years from 1998-2000.
Dr. P.B. Wood, Administrator/Friend-2005
Dr. P.B. Wood has been a loyal supporter of the athletic program since its inception in 1970.
1970-71 Men’s Basketball Team, Inaugural Athletic Team-2005
The team members of the inaugural athletic team at SWU were from the men’s basketball team in 1970-1971. They include Mike Blanton, Robert Cheek, Harold Edmonds, Larry Hooks, Gerald Jennings, Steve Kindschi, Don Ledbetter, Dave Pritchard, Ron Schuman, Steve Tysinger, Jerry Swaney, Tim Williams, and Lewis Hill (Head Coach).
Class of 2007
'04 Natalie Roebuck, Softball-2007
Natalie Roebuck was a member of the softball team and won multiple awards in the 2004 season. She was a First Team NFCA All-American, First Team NAIA All-American, First Team NCCAA All-American, and 2004 GACC Player of the Year.
'91 Rick Freeze, Men's Golf-2007
Rick Freeze was a member of the golf team during his time at SWU. In 1990, he was a member of the NAIA All-District 6 Team, and was the medalist in District 6 in 1991. The 1991 year also saw Rick earning a trip to the NAIA National Tournament.
Mary Will Thomas, Friend/Honorary Mother-2007
Mary Will Thomas has been a loyal supporter of the athletic program since its inception in 1970.
Class of 2008
'02 April Grant, Softball-2008
April Grant was a member of the softball team at SWU. She was a 2001 and 2002 GACC All-Conference Team member, 2002 NFCA First Team All-American , the 2002 Team MVP, and the 2002 GACC Player of the Year.
Class of 2009
'82 Dan Wood, Men's Soccer-2009
Dan Wood was a member of the men’s soccer team at SWU and was the goalkeeper for the 1979 NCCAA National Qualifying team. He is currently the Executive Director of the NCCAA.
Class of 2011
Dr. David Spittal, University President 1994-2011
Dr. David Spittal served as the President of SWU from 1994-2011. During his time at SWU, Dr. Spittal was responsible for expanding the athletic programs to include men’s and women’s cross country and women’s soccer, while also adding the softball complex and having an addition added on to historic Tysinger Gymnasium.