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5 voted into Big South Conference Hall of Fame

Wednesday - 3/28/2012, 7:18pm  ET

STEVE REED
AP Sports Writer

CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Former Winthrop basketball coach Gregg Marshall headlines a list of five elected for enshrinement into the Big South Conference Hall of Fame on Wednesday.

In nine seasons at Winthrop, Marshall won seven tournament titles, six regular season championships and finished 194-83 overall for the Eagles _ more wins than any other coach in conference history at that time.

Marshall left to coach Wichita State in 2007 where he remains.

The other inductees include former Winthrop baseball player Jason Colson, former Liberty radio broadcaster Jerry Edwards, former UNC Greensboro women's golfer Becky Morgan and former Coastal Carolina cross country/track athlete Jolene Williams.

The five individuals will be officially inducted on May 31 during a special ceremony at the conference's annual spring meetings in Hilton Head, S.C.

Marshall was 104-24 (81.3 percent) in Big South Conference games, the best winning percentage in league history. He also was a remarkable 19-2 in conference tournament games.

"I am honored to be elected into the Big South Conference Hall and Fame," Marshall said. "I want to commend the players, staff, and administrators who helped make that time so special. I will always look back fondly on my time at Winthrop and the start of my head coaching career."

Marshall took over the Winthrop men's basketball program in April, 1998 after the squad finished 7-20 the previous season. In his first season at the helm he led the Eagles to a 21-8 overall record and the Big South regular-season championship, culminating in his first tournament title and an NCAA Tournament berth.

He directed Winthrop to four-straight Big South tournament championships and NCAA Tournament appearances in his first four seasons (1999-02), the first coach and men's basketball program in league history to accomplish the achievement.

Marshall was a four-time Big South Coach of the Year honoree.

He led Winthrop to seven NCAA Tournament appearances in all, including a 2007 First Round win over Notre Dame -- the Big South's first-ever first round victory. Marshall also directed Winthrop to a Top 25 ranking in 2007, becoming the first and only Big South men's basketball team to be nationally-ranked, and the Eagles reached as high as No. 21 and finished the season at No. 22 in both the Associated Press and Coaches polls.

(asterisk)Colson finished his career in 2001 as the Big South's and Winthrop's all-time leader in career games played (247), home runs (53), RBI (216) and total bases (517). He remains the league's home run king and is the only player in conference history with 50 career home runs and 50 career doubles, as well as the lone player in the record books to hit 10 or more home runs in all four seasons. Colson was drafted in the seventh round (366th overall) by the Toronto Blue Jays in the 2001 MLB Draft and played professionally until 2009.

(asterisk)Edwards, elected as a significant contributor, served as the radio "Voice of the Flames" for 29 years and was behind the microphone when Liberty joined the Big South in 1991-92, witnessing several key moments in Conference history. He called more than 300 football games and 800 men's basketball contests.

(asterisk)Morgan was a four-time All-Big South honoree (1994-97) and the third Big South women's golfer at the time to earn All-Conference honors all four seasons. She won the Big South Championship three years and remains the only three-time individual champion in conference history. She's been a member of the LPGA Tour since 2001 where she has competed in more than 230 Tour events with career earnings of more than $2.1 million, and owns 18 top 10 finishes, including two runner-up placings.

(asterisk)Williams compiled one of Coastal Carolina's most decorated athletic careers that included All-American status and numerous Big South Conference honors. She was an 11-time Big South individual champion while competing in cross country, indoor and outdoor track. She was the national runner-up in the 3,000 meter run at the 1998 NCAA indoor track national championships and finished seventh in the 3,000 meter run at the 1998 NCAA outdoor track national championships.

The Hall of Fame now totals 49 members.


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