TROY – Troy University Director of Athletics Brent Jones and the Troy University Sports Hall of Fame Committee announced Monday the members of the ninth induction class into the Troy University Sports Hall of Fame. The six new inductees will be enshrined in a special ceremony on Saturday, April 25, 2020.
The class consists of Barney Burnett (golf), Nancy Dansby Swanson (women’s tennis), Rachel Hassan Aubrey (volleyball), Max Howell (football), Mark King (football) and Jude Rinaldi (baseball).
Seats for the ceremony in Trojan Arena can be purchased for $100 each and tables can be purchased for $800. Sponsorships are also available for the evening. For more information, or to purchase tickets, contact Helen Shirey at 334-670-3482.
Barney Burnett – Golf
A leader of both the men’s and women’s golf programs at Troy, Barney Burnett led the Trojans through their successful transition from Division II to I. Burnett coached the men’s team from 1986 to 2002 and served as the women’s head coach from 1996 to 2002. During his illustrious career, Burnett coached 18 All-Americans, six All-America Scholars and nine of his teams won conference championships. A native of Troy since 1948, Burnett guided the men’s team to seven appearances in the NCAA Division II Championship with five top-five finishes, including a runner-up performance in 1992. Burnett led Troy to five Gulf South Conference titles in his first six seasons and the success continued when the Trojans transitioned to Division I as Troy won conference titles in its four years at the highest level of collegiate athletics in both the East Coast Conference and Mid-Continent Conference. As the head coach of the women’s program, Burnett led the Trojans to nine team titles and 11 individual medalist honors. All told as the head coach for both programs, Burnett finished with 1,730 victories and the Trojans won 62 percent of their head-to-head matchups.
Nancy Dansby Swanson – Women’s Tennis
A pioneer in women’s tennis at Troy, Nancy Dansby Swanson blazed the trail for those to follow in the program. A native of Marietta, Ga., Dansby reached the semifinals of the AIAW Small College National Championship as a freshman for the Trojans and helped Troy finish fifth nationally as a team; she lost to the eventual national champion. Dansby finished that season with a 17-3 record at No. 1 singles and 14-1 record at No. 1 doubles. Led by Dansby, Troy won the AAIAW Championship in 1977 and along with Ellyn Thomas she won the state title at No. 1 doubles. She proved her prowess on the court by defeating a male opponent when she played as a substitute for Watford University. Dansby also starred for the women’s basketball team where she averaged 12.4 points per game, second best on the team behind fellow Troy University Hall of Fame member Denise Monroe.
Rachel Hassan Aubrey – Volleyball
The most dominant offensive player to put on a Troy volleyball uniform, Rachel Hassan Aubrey was a two-time All-Atlantic Sun Conference selection and her name litters the Troy record book. A native of San Antonio, Texas, Hassan is Troy’s all-time leader with 1,644 kills, 4.08 points per set and 3.96 kills per set while ranking second in points (1865.5) and eighth in blocks (212). Her 616 kills during the 2002 season are the most in school history by a 119-kill cushion while her 675.5 points that year are the most in a season by 72 points. Hassan also posted the eighth most kills in a season, the top two kills per set and points per set totals in a season and two of the top nine attack percentages in a season. Also an outstanding student, Hassan was named to the Verizon Academic All-District First Team and was received the Algernon Sydney Sullivan Award, which is the highest honor bestowed on a Troy student. Following her playing career, Hassan received her medical degree from the University of Texas Health Science Center in San Antonio.
Max Howell – Football
A prominent presence on the football field at Troy in the 1960s, Max Howell played for the then Red Wave in 1961 and 1962 before serving as an assistant coach under Troy Sports Hall of Fame head coach Billy Atkins on the 1968 NAIA National Championship team. A Prattville, Ala., native, Howell moved into the high school coaching ranks following his time at Troy where he coached future NFL Hall of Fame running back Emmitt Smith at Escambia (Fla.) High School. Howell eventually moved into the collegiate ranks where he coached with Bobby Bowden at Florida State from 1987 to 1988 and then served as the recruiting coordinator under Billy Brewer at Ole Miss from 1989 to 1990. Following his coaching career, Howell became an influential member of the sports media community where he is best known as the host of multiple syndicated sports radio programs across the South. He is actively involved in sports media, writing for sports publications and internet sites.
Mark King – Football
One of the best offensive linemen in school history, Mark King was a two-time All-American and two-time All-Gulf South Conference center during his tenure with the Trojans from 1973 to 1974. A native of Tallahassee, Fla., King helped lead Troy to a Gulf South Conference championship during his first season as he anchored an offensive line that paved the way for Troy’s running backs to average more than four yards per carry – the Trojans ranked among the Gulf South leaders in total offense, rushing offense, passing offense and scoring offense. He was named to the Associated Press All-America First Team following the 1973 season in addition to earning Gulf South First Team honors, twice being named the United Press International National Lineman of the Week, serving as Troy’s team captain and earning the Capital City Bowl’s Sportsmanship & Leadership Trophy. The success continued the following year as King was named to the NAIA All-America First Team and the Associated Press All-America First Team for a second straight year. King transferred to Troy from the University of Florida following his sophomore season where he was rated as the fourth best offensive center in the country by a prominent magazine. A semifinalist for the NCAA Post-Graduate Scholarship following his senior season in 1974, King was a member of the Omicron Delta Kappa National Leadership Honor Society was a nominee for the Gulf South Conference Commissioner’s Trophy. Following his playing career, King played for the Kansas City Chiefs in the National Football League and then coached high school football in the state of Alabama for six years. He joined the Marie Corps at the age of 28 and following a distinguished 28-year career, King retired at the rank of Full Colonel.
Jude Rinaldi – Baseball
Arguably the best hitter in school history, Jude Rinaldi helped lead Troy to back-to-back NCAA Division II National Championships in 1986 and 1987 all while cementing himself in the Troy record book for with numbers that will likely never be broken. A native of Dunedin, Fla., Rinaldi earned All-America First Team honors following the 1987 season in which he set the school record with a .431 batting average and .819 slugging percentage; additionally, his .511 on-base percentage that season ranks fifth best in Troy history. In 45 games played that season, Rinaldi added 45 RBIs, struck out just nine times and hit 16 home runs, a total that was the second most in school history at the time. Rinaldi was named the 1987 College World Series Most Outstanding Player after batting .588 with five runs scored, two home runs and seven RBIs in Troy’s four games. In the career annals of Troy baseball history, Rinaldi ranks among the top 10 to wear Trojans across their chest in both batting average and slugging percentage. He was inducted in the second class of the Troy Baseball Hall of Fame in 1993.