Furman University’s Athletics Hall of Fame induction ceremony will be held Feb. 10 at the Huguenot Loft in downtown Greenville. The event will begin with cocktails at 6 p.m., followed by dinner and enshrinement ceremonies at 7 p.m. Tickets to the event, which is open to the public, are available HERE.
Heralded women’s golf coach Mic Potter, acclaimed women’s golfer Taylor Totland ’17, and decorated football quarterback Billy Napier ’03 comprise the 2022 class, while All-America soccer player Shea Salinas ’08 is being inducted this year as part of the 2021 class.
— Furman Football (@PaladinFootball) June 8, 2023
Potter, who directed Furman’s women’s golf program from 1983-2005, coached the Paladins to 16 NCAA Tournament appearances, including a national runner-up finish in 1987. Furman’s NCAA worksheet during his tenure included six top-10 finishes and 12 top-15 slates, as well as NCAA regional qualifications every year beginning in 1993 when the format was established. An eight-time Southern Conference Coach of the Year selection, he directed Furman to 36 tournament titles and was instrumental in the growth of the Furman LPGA Pro-Am. Potter’s impressive list of former Paladin players, which includes 16 All-Americans and 12 Ladies Professional Golf Association (LPGA) alumnae, is headlined by Dottie Pepper, a 17-time LPGA Tour winner. His coaching success continued at the University of Alabama, where he directed the Crimson Tide to the 2012 NCAA National Championship and was named 2018 WGCA National Coach of the Year.
Totland was instrumental in putting the Furman women’s golf program back on the national stage, earning honorable mention All-America honors three times in her career. The first player in SoCon history to post top-three finishes four times at the league championships, she was only the ninth four-time All-SoCon selection in the history of the league. As a sophomore, she qualified as an individual for the 2015 NCAA Championship after tying for fifth at the NCAA East Regional and went on to record three top-25 regional finishes in her career. She placed among the top 25 twice at the NCAA Championships and achieved a 39th-place national ranking her senior season. A native of Tinton Falls, N.J., and 2015 Edna Harness Furman Female Athlete of the Year, she led the Paladins to three SoCon Championships and ranks third all-time with a 73.34 stroke average over 125 rounds during her four-year career.
𝙂𝙧𝙚𝙖𝙩 𝙤𝙥𝙥𝙤𝙧𝙩𝙪𝙣𝙞𝙩𝙮 𝙩𝙤 𝙜𝙚𝙩 𝙞𝙣𝙩𝙤 𝘾𝙤𝙡𝙡𝙚𝙜𝙚 𝘼𝙩𝙝𝙡𝙚𝙩𝙞𝙘𝙨
— Furman Football (@PaladinFootball) June 9, 2023
Napier fashioned an outstanding football career that encompassed two SoCon Championships, highlighted by the 2001 campaign that saw Furman post a 12-3 record, league title, and NCAA I-AA (FCS) national runner-up finish. In that 2001 season, Napier engineered one of the notable victories in program history, connecting on all 12 pass attempts for 159 yards and a touchdown in a 24-17 triumph over Georgia Southern in the I-AA playoff semifinals, halting the Eagles’ 39-game home winning streak while representing their first home playoff loss in 28 games. A two-time All-SoCon selection who ranks among Furman’s best in many passing and total offense categories, the Chatsworth, Ga., native began his coaching career in 2004, making several stops on the way to earning his first head coaching assignment at Louisiana in 2017, where he won four Sun Belt West Division Championships, including two outright league titles. He was named head coach at Florida on Nov. 28, 2021.
Elite Camp #2 this Saturday‼️
— Furman Football (@PaladinFootball) June 13, 2023
Salinas was a fixture in Furman’s midfield, primarily as a winger, from 2004-07. He earned third team United Soccer Coaches All-America honors and first team United Soccer Coaches Scholar Athlete All-America accolades as a senior in 2007 after guiding the Paladins to a SoCon regular season title, league tournament title, and an NCAA Tournament second round appearance. The Grapevine, Texas, native was a two-time All-SoCon choice and three-time SoCon Academic Honor Roll member. He was selected 15th overall by the San Jose Earthquakes in the 2008 MLS SuperDraft and recently retired following his 15th season in the league, including his 13th in San Jose. He is the franchise’s all-time leader in assists, ranks second in appearances and corner kicks, and is third in minutes played.
MIC POTTER — Women’s Golf Head Coach (1983-2005)…spent 23 years as the Furman women’s golf head coach…also served for 10 of those years as Director of Intercollegiate Golf and played a key role in the growth of the highly successful Furman LPGA Pro-Am…guided FU to 16 NCAA Championship appearances…led Furman to six top-10 finishes at the NCAA Championships, including a runner-up finish in 1987…Furman finished among the top 15 at the NCAA Championships 12 times under Potter’s direction…coached Furman to an NCAA regional each year of his tenure, dating back to 1993, the first season in which the regional format was established…eight-time SoCon Coach of the year selection…coached Furman to 36 tournament titles…leads all active women’s golf coaches with 63 total victories…under his tutelage, Furman won 11 SoCon Championships from the tournament’s inception in 1994 through the 2005 season…his former players have collectively amassed approximately 100 seasons on the LPGA tour…coached Dottie Pepper, who went on to win 17 LPGA events in her 20-year career…also coached Furman’s LPGA players Caroline Peek, Ashli Price-Bunch, Diana D’Alessio, Joan Delk, Sara Ann Timms-McGetrick, Denise Baldwin-Kileen, Jen Hanna, Maggie Will, Brandi Jackson, Sara Johnson-Sargent, Kathleen Ekey, and Jenny Suh…Furman players earned 16 WGCA All-American citations under his direction…seven of Potter’s players were voted the Edna Hartness Furman Female Athlete of the Year…coached 10 SoCon individual champions, 12 SoCon Players of the Year, four SoCon Freshmen of the Year, and 38 All-SoCon selections…inducted into the Women’s Golf Coaches Association Hall of Fame in 1994…coached Caroline Peek, the 1992, 1993, and 1994 NCAA long-drive champion, and the 1994 SoCon Female Athlete of the Year…left Furman to become the head women’s golf coach at Alabama…led the Crimson Tide to a national championship in 2012…at Alabama, coached the 2015 NCAA individual champion, Emma Talley…voted the 2018 WGCA National Coach of the Year, the second selection of his career…six-time SEC Coach of the Year.
TAYLOR TOTLAND — Women’s Golf (2014-17)…four-year letterwinner…earned an All-American honorable mention citation from the WGCA in 2015…also garnered GolfWeek All-America honorable mention accolades in both 2015 and 2017…competed in three NCAA regionals and three NCAA Championships…qualified as an individual for the 2015 NCAA Championship after tying for fifth at the NCAA East Regional…recorded three top-25 NCAA regional finishes…tied for 20th at the 2016 NCAA Championships and tied for 24th at the 2017 NCAA Championships…ranked 39th in Golfstat rankings as a senior…became only the ninth four-time All-SoCon selection in the history of the league…was the first player in SoCon history to finish among the top three individuals four times at the league championships, a feat that only has been accomplished one other time…2015 SoCon Player of the Year…2015 SoCon Individual Champion…2014 SoCon Freshman of the Year…2017 U.S. Women’s Amateur Four-Ball Champion…2105 Edna Hartness Furman Female Athlete of the Year…member of SoCon 100th Anniversary Team…member of three SoCon Championship teams…won individual medalist honors at the 2014 Lady Paladin Invitational…ranks third all-time with a 73.34 stroke average over 125 rounds during her four-year career…as a senior, totaled 16 rounds at par or better and recorded five top-10 finishes in 11 tournaments.
BILLY NAPIER — Football (1999-02)…quarterback…four-year letterman, two-year starter…saw action in 37 games and made 24 starts…two-time All-SoCon selection (2001 & ’02)….member of three SoCon championship teams (1999, ’00, ’01) and Paladin squads that made four playoff appearances (1999-02) and posted a 38-13 overall record and 26-6 league slate…passed for 1,772 yards and 10 touchdowns in his first season as a starter in 2001, helping Furman to a 12-3 season, SoCon title, and NCAA I-AA (FCS) national runner-up finish…threw two TD passes in 28-22 win over 5th-ranked Appalachian State (2001) and helped rally Furman from 20-7 third quarter deficit to beat Western Kentucky, 24-20, in first round playoff game (2001)…completed 12×12 passes (FU record) for 159 yards and TD in 24-17 road semifinal playoff win over Georgia Southern (2001), snapping the Eagles’ 39-game home winning streak and marking Georgia Southern’s first home playoff loss in 28-game history…elected captain by teammates in 2002…set Furman single game pass efficiency standard (411.08) by completing 8×10 passes for 237 yards, 4 TDs vs. Elon (2002)…in a driving rainstorm on mud-caked field, engineered 11-play, 74-yard TD drive to beat Wofford, 23-21, in Spartanburg with a 7-yard TD pass with 29 seconds to go (2002)…win secured playoff berth for FU…career rankings: 4,756 yards (6th/FU), 28 touchdowns (8th/FU), 64.8 completion percentage (1st/FU), 147.15 passing efficiency (4th/FU)…still holds four school records…began coaching career post-Furman, with stops at Clemson (2003-04; 2006-10), S.C. State (2005), Alabama (2011/analyst), Colorado State (2012), Alabama (2013-16), Arizona State (2017)…began head coaching career at Louisiana (2017-21), where he won four Sun Belt West Division Championships, including two outright league titles…named head coach at Florida on Nov. 28, 2021.
SHEA SALINAS ’08 — Men’s Soccer (2004-07)…midfielder…four-year letterwinner who garnered 2007 third team NSCAA All-America honors and 2007 first team NSCAA Scholar Athlete All-America accolades…named to the NSCAA All-South Region third team as a junior and NSCAA All-South Region first team as a senior in 2007…two-time All-Southern Conference selection in 2006 and ’07…three-time SoCon Academic Honor Roll member…tallied five goals and added nine assists to help Furman to the 2007 SoCon regular season title, tournament championship and second round NCAA Tournament appearance…earned 2005 All-SoCon Tournament honors…totaled 14 goals and 21 assists in 77 matches as a Paladin…Selected 15th overall by the San Jose Earthquakes in the second round of the 2008 MLS SuperDraft…recently retired following his 15th year in MLS and 13th with San Jose…ranks first in franchise history in assists (53), second in appearances (331) and corner kicks (405), and third in minutes played (18,133) in starts (182)…winger has tallied 22 career goals…has been a “face of the franchise” for the Earthquakes over his 13-year career in San Jose, featuring in the organizations marketing efforts and one of its most active participants in community service projects in the San Jose area.
Article Courtesy of furmanpaladins.com Julie Paré