Signing day not just for football
Published: Tuesday, January 27, 2009 at 11:21 p.m.
Last Modified: Tuesday, January 27, 2009 at 11:21 p.m.
Next Wednesday might best be known as football's national signing day, but that doesn't mean there aren't other athletes making their college intentions official.
Buchholz's talented discus and shot put thrower Wilamena Hopkins has decided she will sign a national letter of intent with Alabama that day, according to Bobcats' coach Ron Norris.
"I know she was looking forward to going to an SEC school, and her first choice at the start was Tennessee," Norris said. "But she looked at the big picture and what was offered financially and Alabama was a great fit."
Norris also complimented Crimson Tide coach Sandy Fowler's development of throwers, in particular former South Florida shot putter Chandra Brewer who placed fourth in last summer's United States' Olympic Trials. Brewer, now a middle school coach in Tuscaloosa, trained with Fowler for the Olympics.
"I told Wilamena that hopefully we'll see her (at the 2012) Trials in Eugene (Ore.)," Norris said.
Also a basketball player and aspiring singer, Hopkins is a two-time Gainesville Sun athlete of the year. She has personal bests of 133-0.00 in the discus and 46.9-00 in the shot put.
COURT OF LEGENDS: The area's all-time greatest girls basketball player will be receiving another honor soon.
Former Buchholz standout Tammy Jackson, later a Gator, Olympian and professional player, will be inducted into the inaugural Florida Association of Basketball Coaches "Court of Legends" on April 18 at the Rosen Center Plaza in Orlando.
She will be joined by former Gator Latonya Washington and former Tennessee All-American Brigette Gordon, as well as male player inductees Otis Birdsong, Derek Harper, Artis Gilmore, Darryl Dawkins, Mitch Richmond and Howard Porter. Men's coaches Don Wallen, Bernard Wilkes, Vince Shaeffer, Freddie Dyals, Jack Wilson, Floyd Andrews, Glenn Wilkes, Milton Johnson, Bill Alheim and Jack Deedrick and women's coaches Al Austin, and Ronnie and Janis Bond also will be enshrined.
And here's a special one for Gator fans: both the 2005-06 and '06-07 national championship teams will be inducted. They will be joined by 1966-67 FIAA state champs Sarasota Booker, which finished 35-0 and averaged 107.1 points-a-game.
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