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BPC inducts alumni into Athletic Hall of Fame, instates former faculty 

as honorary alumnus


By Kelley M. Arnold

Director of News and Public Information

MOUNT VERNON—Brewton-Parker College’s National Alumni Society inducted one individual and an entire team into the college’s Athletic Hall of Fame March 24 during Alumni Weekend 2007. The group also distinguished a special athletic coach as an Honorary Alumnus.

Let’s take a closer look at the recipients and their honors.

Athletic Hall of Fame inductees

1997 National Championship Baseball Team

Bill Hinely ('99), left, and Coach Barker
Bill Hinely (’99), left, a member of the 1997 National Championship Baseball Team, accepts the team’s Athletic Hall of Fame induction award from Coach Steve Barker, director of BPC athletics, March 24. [Photo by Hayley M. Boisseau (’08)]

The only team in Brewton-Parker’s history as a four-year college to win a national championship was inducted into the college’s Athletic Hall of Fame. The 1997 National Championship Baseball Team held a 64-7 record after they won the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) championships in Sioux City, Iowa.

Team member William “Bill” Hinely (’99) accepted the award on behalf of his teammates.

“It was a blessing to play the game of baseball. It’s hard to believe that we won the championship 10 years ago,” Hinely said. “It is a great experience to be inducted into the Hall of Fame. It’s something I will remember the rest of my life. Many people can’t say they’ve had the opportunity to play in a world series game, but I thank God that we did.”

1997 National Champs
Members of BPC’s 1997 baseball team celebrate in Sioux City, Iowa, after winning the NAIA National Championship [Photo by Shannon Hinely Bull (’97, ’00)]


Kenneth “Smiley” Gale (’52)

Richard Young ('53), left, Kenneth
Kenneth “Smiley” Gale (’52) accepts the award from Richard Young (‘53) during the presentation ceremony in Gillis Gym March 24. [Photo by Hayley M. Boisseau (’08)]

Described as a “real BPC alum and a great patriot” by fellow classmate and award presenter, Richard Young (’53), Kenneth “Smiley” Gale (’52) accepted the society’s induction into the college’s Athletic Hall of Fame.

Gale was a standout player on both the 1951 and 1952 state champion Barons’ basketball teams.

“This truly is an honor and something I will cherish always,” said Gale. “The foundation I got here went a long way for me to have success in my career. I will always be indebted to Brewton-Parker.”

To the delight of the luncheon attendees, Gale shared a few BPC memories.

“Things sure have changed in the last 57 years,” said Gale, who remembers when the Newton Building, currently used as administrative offices, was the “chow hall,” as he called it. A few valuable lessons he learned during his meals, which were served family style around an eight-place setting table, included: “You weren’t late if you wanted to eat,” and “Don’t close your eyes during grace.” His first Sunday meal left him with just a scrawny piece of chicken as each of his table mates swiped the best pieces as prayer was said.

Honorary Alumnus

Dr. Franklin R. Jones, 1946 Football Coach

Dr. Franklin Jones
Dr. Franklin R. Jones speaks during Alumni Weekend 2006. Jones was unable to attend the 2007 event due to health concerns. (BPC archives)

“Still undefeated.”

That’s the motto of BPC’s last football team’s record. 1946 was the last year BPC played football, and Dr. Franklin R. Jones was the team’s coach.

According to Brewton-Parker College: Triumph Over Adversity, The First One-Hundred Years by Ann C. Turner, Brewton-Parker’s football team had been abandoned in 1936. Dr. Jones was charged by then-president Dr. Charles Ricks to “resurrect” the team in 1946. However, when the football scholarships were cut later that year, so was the team.

Though the experience only lasted a season, the team and its “Coach” has impacted both a lifetime of “boys” and the college as an institution of higher learning.

“Since he coached here in 1946, he has raised money for the school and funded a scholarship in honor of the ’46 football team,” said Roger Byrd, director of alumni relations. “He keeps in touch today with ‘his boys’ and continues to urge them to do well.”

Dr. Jones, who also served as the college’s sophomore advisor, could not accept the award due to health concerns, but his friend, Mary Julia Whaley (’37), accepted the award and read a thank you speech on his behalf.

Mary Julia Whaley ('37), left, and NASB VP Debbie Kittrell
Mary Julia Whaley (’37), friend of Coach Jones and daughter of former BPC president, Rev. R.L. Robinson, accepts the Honorary Alumnus award from National Alumni Society Board Vice President Debbie Kittrell. [Photo by Hayley M. Boisseau (’08)]

“I always said the future of the citizens of Montgomery County would be in good hands with my boys,” said Dr. Jones in a letter read by Whaley. “In just my football team alone, two became mayors, a clerk of court, a television engineer, two ministers, successful businessmen and more. It is an honor to stand shoulder-to-shoulder with these stalwart students and athletes.”



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Brewton-Parker College | Located on U.S. 280 at 201 David-Eliza Fountain Circle, P. O. Box 197, Mount Vernon, GA 30445
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The mission of Brewton-Parker College, a Georgia Baptist college, is to develop the whole student through the application of Biblically-centered truth to a liberal arts curriculum in a community of shared Christian values.
Brewton-Parker College is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools to award associate and baccalaureate degrees. Contact the Commission on Colleges at 1866 Southern Lane, Decatur, Georgia 30033-4097 or call 404-679-4500 for questions about the accreditation of Brewton-Parker College.
Updated on: April 15, 2010 8:26 PM