Bama greats elected to Hall

The Board of Directors of the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame announced recently the names of this year's inductees. The group includes Tiders Cornelius Bennett, Bobby Humphrey and Reginald King.

Other 2003 HOF inductees include Bobby Wallace, Joe Beckwith, Virginia Derby-Grimes, Vince Gibson and Wade Herren.

The 2004 induction banquet will take place in the Birmingham Ballroom, at the Sheraton Birmingham Hotel, Saturday, May 15, 2004. The newly elected eight inductees now bring the total of all inductees since 1969 to 241.

Shown in an Atlanta Falcons uniform, Cornelius Bennett was one of the greatest linebackers in modern football history.

Cornelius Bennett

Category: Football
Born August 25, 1967 in Birmingham, Alabama

Played collegiately at the University of Alabama. All-American three consecutive years (1984, '85, & '86). He became first linebacker to win the prestigious Vince Lombardi Trophy given annually to the top college lineman in the country ('86). Was selected SEC Player of the Year in '86. Was selected to Alabama's Team of the Century. Selected Player of the Decade of the ‘80's. In both the 1985 Aloha Bowl and the '86 Sun Bowl was named Defensive Player of the Game. Number one overall pick in the 1987 NFL Draft. Named the NFL Rookie of the year. Appeared in five Super Bowls (four with Buffalo Bills and one with the Atlanta Falcons). Appeared in five Pro Bowls. 2nd Team NFL All-Decade Team. When he retired he was 3rd all-time in NFL history for fumble recoveries. Holds the Bill's record for all-time fumble recoveries (16). Recorded a fumble recovery in every season except his rookie year. Named UPI AFC Defensive Player of the Year ('91). First player in NFL history (offensively or defensively) to be named Player of the Week two successive weeks in '90. In '89 was awarded the Sington Trophy (named after fellow Alabama Sports Hall of Famer, the late Fred Sington) as the outstanding Professional Male Athlete of the Year in Alabama.

Bobby Humphrey

Category: Football
Born October 11, 1966 in Birmingham, Alabama

Played collegiately at the University of Alabama. He was a two time All-American (1986 & '87). Two-time All-SEC. He is number one on Alabama's all-time, all-purpose yardage list for a career 4,958 yards and a season with 2,016. Has the highest average for all-purpose yards per game for a season 168 yards and a career 141.7. He is number one in rushing yardage for a season 1,471 (1986). He is presently fifth on Alabama's all-time scoring list (242). He is tied for first in career games of 100 or more rushing yards a game (15) and first in 200 or more rushing yards a game (four). Selected to Alabama's All-Century team. Selected to the Team of Decade (1980's). Chosen Offensive Player of Decade (1980's). Was the first round pick of the Denver Broncos in 1989. First Bronco to record back-to-back 1,000-yard rushing seasons (1989 & '90). Was the first rookie in Denver's history to run for 1,000 yards. Played in Super Bowl XXIV.

Reginald King

Category: Basketball
Born on February 14, 1957 in Ensley, Alabama

All time leading scorer at Alabama (2,168). Third leading rebounder (1,279). Led the SEC in rebounds per game (13.3) in 1978. Led Alabama in scoring three consecutive years (1977-'79). Named SEC Player of the Year as a freshman and sophomore ('78 and'79). Named SEC Athlete of the Year (‘79). Was named ALL-SEC for three consecutive years. All-American two years. He led Alabama in field goal shooting accuracy, hitting 54.4 per cent of his shots his sophomore year. First team Parade All-American out of H.S. 18th overall pick in the NBA draft by the Kansas City Kings. Played four years with the Kings and two years with the Seattle Supersonics.

A graduate of Mississippi State University, Bobby Wallace was recognized mainly for his career as a football coach at the University of North Alabama. Now head coach at Temple, Wallace remains the winningest head coach in Division II playoff history.

Though his stats were limited by injury, Bobby Humphrey finished his career as one of the top two or three running backs in Alabama football history.

Joe Beckwith played college baseball at Auburn. Beckwith pitched eight years in the Major Leagues for the Los Angeles Dodgers and Kansas City Royals.

The lone female inductee this year, Virginia Derby-Grimes played golf at Auburn and later coached the sport there. She won the Alabama Women's State Amateur five times ('89, '93, '94, '95, & '98).

A native of Birmingham and graduate of Florida State University, Vince Gibson was head football coach at Kansas State, Louisville and Tulane.

A native of Birmingham and graduate of Tulane, Wade Herren was a key figure in the Alabama state tennis world, founding Southern Tennis Magazine.

The Reunion of Winners Golf outing will be held on Thursday, May 13th at Bent Brook Golf Course. If you would like more information about the golf outing or the banquet contact the Hall of Fame at (205) 323-6665.

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