News from MSU Media Relations--June 6

The lastest sports news from the MSU Media Relations Department...Track & Field and Women's Basketball.

Track & Field
STARKVILLE, Miss. - Mississippi State's men's track and field team will have four individuals and a relay team competing for national championships beginning Wednesday, June 6 at the Alex G. Spanos Sports Complex in Sacramento, Calif. The 2007 NCAA Outdoor Championships are being hosted by the Hornets of Sacramento State. This marks the third straight year that the national meet has been contested in the capital city of California.

MSU will have two competitors in the 800-meter run with juniors Golden Coachman and Chris Woods getting State's competition underway on Wednesday at 5:40 p.m. CST. There are two rounds of preliminary runs in the two-lap event before the final run on Sunday, June 9. Coachman, from Birmingham, Ala. by way of Wallace State Community College, set a new school record in the 800-meter run at the 2007 Southeastern Conference Championships with a mark of one minute, 47.40 seconds. He qualified for the championship trials with his fourth-place finish at the NCAA Mideast Regional in Columbia, Mo. Woods, a native of Atlanta, Ga., finished fifth at the regional level with a career-best mark of 1:48.15. He is making his second-straight appearance in the 800-meter championship event. A year ago, he posted a mark of 1:51.46 in the preliminary round.

Senior Bruce Davis will vie for the 400-meter national title after scoring a new personal-best mark of 46.02 at the regional level. The opening round of competition of the event is set for 8:00 p.m. CST with the top two individuals and the next six best times advancing to the semifinals. MState distance standout Travis McKay will run in the 3000-meter steeplechase event. The Edmonton, Alberta, Canada-product established a new career mark in the distance event at the Mideast Regional in late May with a time of 8:49.45.

State's 4x400-meter relay team also made the championship field after capturing third place at the Mideast Regional. The senior-laden foursome of A. Davis, B. Davis, Nathan Daniels and Ezra Jones, clocked a season-best 3:04.72 to move on to the national meet. The squad enters the NCAA Championships with the fifth-best time in the 18-team field.

Live results will be available throughout the four-day event at the online home of all NCAA Championships ­

Women's Basketball
STARKVILLE, Miss. - Mississippi State Director of Athletics Larry Templeton has announced the hiring of Greg Franklin as assistant women's basketball coach. The hiring is pending approval of the Mississippi Board of Trustees, Institutions of Higher Learning.

"We are very excited to have Greg join the Lady Bulldog staff," said Mississippi State Head Coach Sharon Fanning. "He is an excellent teacher, coach and recruiter. Greg's experience and success will make a positive impact on the MSU women's basketball team."

Franklin comes to Starkville from Southeastern Illinois College in Harrisburg, Ill. He joined the college in 1997 as an assistant men's basketball coach. While with the men's team, the Falcons finished seventh in the National Junior College Athletic Association Tournament and won the Region XXIV Tournament once. He continued serving as an assistant men's coach for one season after being named the head women's coach prior to the start of the 2002-2003 season.

As women's head coach, Franklin put the SIC program on the national map. In five seasons at the helm, he posted a record of 154-25 and led the 2006-07 squad to a fourth-place finish at the NJCAA National Tournament and won the Region XXIV title. After the team's 33-3 overall record and 16-0 conference mark, Franklin earned conference, region and district coach of the year honors, IBCA Illinois Junior College Coach of the Year honors for the third time and was named the Women's Basketball Coaches Association Regional Coach of the Year for the third consecutive year. The squad was the nation's top-ranked team during the last month of the season and finished fourth in the final NJCAA poll.

In his previous four years, the squad never lost more than nine games during the year and finished conference play undefeated during three of those four years. The Falcons won the 2005-06 and 2004-05 Region XXIV Tournaments.

"I am extremely excited," Franklin said. "Coach (Sharon) Fanning has years of experience and this is an opportunity to grow as a coach. The caliber of player at Southeastern Illinois is like the Southeastern Conference, so it is a great chance to build on the talent pool already there."

In addition to serving as the women's head coach, Franklin was the school's athletic director from 2000 until his departure. He also served in various other capacities throughout his tenure, including being community education recruiter, student ambassador's director, course instructor in bowling and softball and the student activities/student government director.

Following college graduation, Franklin was a student assistant at his alma mater before becoming an assistant coach at Brewton Parker College in Ga. Before arriving at SIC, he spent two years at Butler County (Ky.) High School.

A 1994 graduate of Austin Peay, Franklin graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in health and physical education. He lettered for the Governors in basketball from 1989-1993, earning all-Ohio Valley Conference honors as a junior and senior and all-OVC Freshman Team honors and Co-Freshman of the Year honors during the 1989-1990 season. He finished his career with 1,000+ points.

A native of Central City, Ky., Franklin graduated from Central City High School in 1989. Under coach Tony Hopper, Franklin earned a First Team all-State selection as a senior, was twice named the district's Most Valuable Player and was a three-time all-District and all-Region selection. A four-time all-Conference pick, Franklin was named to the Third Team all-State as a junior and Honorable Mention during his sophomore season.

Franklin is currently working towards his Master of Science degree in human movement.

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