SCOOBA – In conjunction with East Mississippi Community College’s Homecoming festivities this weekend (Sept. 27-29) on the Scooba campus, eight new members will be formally inducted into the school’s Sports Hall of Fame.
EMCC’s 2013 Sports Hall of Fame inductees will be honored with a Friday night reception and banquet to be held at the F.R. Young Student Union. The eight-member class is also scheduled to be recognized Saturday afternoon at EMCC’s Sullivan-Windham Field during halftime activities of the Lions’ 2 p.m. Homecoming football contest against MACJC North Division foe Coahoma Community College.
The 2013 class of the EMCC Sports Hall of Fame consists of: Nolan Atkins (Sweet Water, AL); Allen Bruton (Tupelo); the late Steve Hull (Collinsville); Dick McSpadden (Royston, GA); Jim Murray (Montpelier); Fred Stoops (Hendersonville, TN); Robert Temkovits (Brooksville); and Dora (Strickland) Vaughan (New Hope).
East Mississippi Community College will also honor the school’s 2013 Alumnus of the Year recipient (James “Cubby” Harris of Starkville) and Distinguished Service Award winner (Chip Wells, originally of Columbus) this weekend in Scooba. Harris and Wells will be honored during EMCC’s alumni/friends luncheon set to take place Saturday at 11:15 a.m. at the F.R. Young Student Union on the Scooba campus. The award recipients are also slated to be recognized during Homecoming halftime festivities of Saturday afternoon’s EMCC-Coahoma football contest.
A new addition to this year’s EMCC Homecoming Weekend agenda will be an inaugural baseball alumni game beginning at 6:30 p.m. Saturday at Gerald Poole Field following EMCC’s football game against Coahoma. The Lions will then host an EMCC Baseball Alumni and Friends Golf Tournament Sunday morning (9 a.m. shotgun start) at Lion Hills Golf Course in Columbus.
For additional information about EMCC’s 2013 Homecoming Weekend festivities on the Scooba campus, please visit either the school’s main website at www.eastms.edu or athletics website at www.EMCCAthletics.com.
2013 EAST MISSISSIPPI COMMUNITY COLLEGE SPORTS HALL OF FAME INDUCTEES
NOLAN ATKINS (Sweet Water, AL) – Having grown up in Columbus and attended Lee High School, Nolan Atkins played halfback for head coach Roy Knapp’s 1954 and 1955 football teams at East Mississippi Junior College. After graduating from Mississippi State University in 1961 and following a handful of assistant coaching stops, Atkins began his successful head coaching career in 1966 at Sweet Water (Ala.) High School. He went on to become one of the all-time winningest high school football coaches in the state of Alabama, compiling a 30-year head coaching record of 278-69-5 with four state championships. In addition to having the Sweet Water High School football stadium named in his honor, Atkins is also a member of the Alabama High School Athletic Association, Marengo County Sports and Alabama Baseball Coaches Halls of Fame.
ALLEN BRUTON (Tupelo) – Allen Bruton was a standout athlete on the football field as well as in track and field at Shuqualak High School and later at East Mississippi Junior College. Along with rating as one of only two players to start for EMJC Hall of Fame football coach Bob “Bull” Sullivan on offense and defense during the 1962 and 1963 seasons, Bruton also claimed top scoring honors during the 1963 state junior college track and field meet. Upon earning his mechanical engineering degree from Mississippi State, he taught on the Scooba campus for three years before beginning a successful career in the construction and maintenance fields. A proud cancer survivor and presently residing in Tupelo, Bruton previously served as commissioner of the Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks Commission.
STEVE HULL (Collinsville) – The late Steve Hull was the head men’s basketball coach at East Mississippi Community College before his untimely death at age 39 on Oct. 11, 2001 as a result of a massive heart attack. Following an eight-year stint coaching the boys’ and girls’ basketball teams at West Lauderdale High School, Hull was hired at EMCC in 1995 and went on to earn 1997-98 Coach of the Year honors from his MACJC coaching peers as well as by the Mississippi Association of Coaches. He was a standout baseball player at Millsaps College and furthered his basketball coaching career as a graduate assistant at Delta State University. Hull is survived by his wife, Lisa, and their children – son, Trex, and daughter, Baleigh, who is a senior at West Lauderdale High School.
DICK McSPADDEN (Royston, GA) – Dick McSpadden made his way to East Mississippi Junior College from Panama City, Fla., to play football for coaching legend Bob “Bull” Sullivan. After serving as the Lions’ starting quarterback during the 1957 season, McSpadden moved to the sidelines as a student assistant football coach the following season. The two-sport standout continued to excel on the baseball diamond as a left-handed pitcher on back-to-back state junior college championship teams for head coach Thomas Adams’ EMJC Lions. Following college, McSpadden returned to his native Panama City, Fla., to begin a prosperous 37-year career with the American Investment Company, which later merged into what is now known as Wells Fargo.
JIM MURRAY (Montpelier) – A lifelong resident of Montpelier, Jim Murray was a prep basketball standout and later coached at Clay County High School. He capped his two-year stint on head coach Keyes T. Currie’s East Mississippi Junior College basketball team by earning team MVP and honorable mention all-state laurels as a sophomore. Murray, a Mississippi State graduate, left the public education and coaching ranks in 1977 and went to enjoy a productive 27-year career with Bryan Foods/Sara Lee in West Point. Currently serving on EMCC’s Board of Trustees as well as on the Clay County Cooperative Board of Directors, Murray presently serves as the director of human resources, safety, and land management for Prestage Farms of Mississippi, Inc.
FRED STOOPS (Hendersonville, TN) – Born in Celina, Tenn., Fred Stoops developed his love for sports as a versatile athlete at the Nashville-based Tennessee Preparatory School. His passion for competitive sports enabled him to earn 12 total varsity letters in five different sports at TPS. Stoops was recruited to East Mississippi Junior College by Hall of Fame coaching legend Bob “Bull” Sullivan. After lettering for the Lions during the 1956 and 1957 football seasons, Stoops earned a full scholarship to Tennessee Tech University. Having to return home to Nashville shortly thereafter to look for employment, Stoops took a part-time job and developed it into a rewarding 34-year career at what is now known as LifeWay Christian Resources.
ROBERT TEMKOVITS (Brooksville) – Brooksville native Robert Temkovits was a four-sport letterman at Noxubee County High School before following in the footsteps of his older brother (Charles Temkovits Jr.) to nearby East Mississippi Junior College. After earning team MVP and all-division honors as a sophomore for head coach Bob “Bull” Sullivan’s 1967 EMJC football club, Temkovits lettered two seasons as a flanker at Delta State University. In 1974, he joined his parents’ family grocery store business and began a four-decade career at Tem’s Food Market. Now as president and owner of the family business, Temkovits has been accorded Businessman of the Year and Catfish Farmer of the Year honors for Noxubee County.
DORA (STRICKLAND) VAUGHAN (New Hope) – Lifelong New Hope resident Dora (Strickland) Vaughan made the short trek to Scooba following a standout prep athletic career at New Hope High School. Her basketball success continued at East Mississippi Junior College, where she ranked as the team’s scoring leader and team captain both seasons before taking her talents to the University of South Alabama. Making an immediate impact as an upperclassman, she led the Lady Jaguars in scoring both years as a two-time team captain. After earning her elementary education degree in 1977, Vaughan returned to her hometown to begin an impactful 35-year career as a second grade teacher at New Hope. A proud volunteer with the YMCA’s After School program, she is currently in her second year at Immanuel Christian School following her brief retirement from New Hope.